5 Ways You Can Support Your Employees' Mental Health

By Alicia Geigel on July 1, 2020

Making employees happy at work isn’t always easy, as there is a lot to manage in the office and on an individual level, however, if you care about your business and employee happiness/satisfaction, you want to go above and beyond to ensure that your employees are happy while supporting their mental health as well.

Now, more than ever, it is imperative that employers support the well-being and mental health of employees. With the coronavirus pandemic shifting our normal work routines, most of the nation’s workforce has made the switch from commuting to work to working remotely. For many, this change is a breath of fresh air, but for plenty of others, the notion of working from home has proved to be more difficult and taxing than anticipated.

In a recent study of more than 2,700 employees by the Harvard Business Review, 75% of participants have felt more socially isolated as a result of the coronavirus restrictions, with 67% experiencing higher stress levels. In addition, 57% of participants noted greater feelings of anxiousness and 53% experienced greater emotional exhaustion. Prior to the pandemic, most employees had a time-specific workday and could escape from work the second they entered the door. Now, with a significant amount of employees working from home, work is more consuming and thus more pervasive in everyday life.

While no one can anticipate when life and work will resume normalcy, it is important to recognize ways that you, as an employer, can support your employees both now and in the future.

Are you an employer that has been affected by the coronavirus pandemic? Looking for ways to boost your employees’ morale and support their mental health? These five tips will help you create a supportive work atmosphere and make your employees happier while working from home!

work, employee, people, man, woman, job

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Provide Adequate Accessibility to Counseling and Coaching Services: The biggest way to support your employees’ mental health is to provide them with the appropriate counseling and coaching services to help better their mental health. For example, coffee brand powerhouse Starbucks recently gave hundreds of thousands of its employees access to 20 free sessions with a mental health therapist or coach. Search out different online counseling or coaching services and work with them to obtain a package to cover your employees. In addition, you can work with charities like Time to Change to get both workplace mental health training and mental health support.

Give Access to Meditation Apps and Different Online Resources: Employees can feel both valued and appreciated in a number of ways, whether that’s through providing access to counseling services or giving access to premium meditation apps that could otherwise cost them money. Just going this extra step to assure them of both your personal support and the support of the company they are employed under means so much and can help foster a better work environment for your employees.

Be More Flexible of Employee Requests: Sometimes the solution to an employee problem is right in right of you and easy to solve. Because of this, when dealing with an employee who is concerned about their current job situation and things concerning the office, it is important as an employer to be flexible and as accommodating as possible. Maybe they are dealing with the sickness of a loved one or the stress of being away from family, thus making work more difficult, give them the flexibility they need to help make the situation easier.

Facilitate a Healthy Work/Life Balance: As an employer, you are constantly looking into ways to make work better for your employees, while the other part of their life gets neglected. Granted, it’s not your job as an employer to go outside of work confines and change the lives of those working for you, however, it is your job to give them the right balance of work and life. Encourage employees to take breaks when needed, emphasize the importance of taking full lunch breaks, and establish hours where work-related communication is prohibited.

Create an Atmosphere that Encourages Discussing Mental Health: Showing support for your employees starts with creating an atmosphere that encourages openly discussing mental health and mental health issues. If employees feel discouraged from talking about their problems, there is either no support or not enough support given to them in regards to mental health. You can create a supportive work atmosphere by showing compassion to your employees and their problems, sending out daily meditations or motivational messages, and having routine meetings that focus on how each employee is doing, either daily or weekly!

work, woman, employee, boss, job, manager

Image via Pexels

When it comes to running a company or overseeing employees, supporting their mental health should always be a top priority. If your employees feel valued, appreciated, and supported, they will not only be more productive but they’ll also be happier at work. Though it may seem uncomfortable to discuss mental health at your workplace, creating a supportive environment is worth it for both yourself and your employees in the long run!

By Alicia Geigel

Uloop Writer
Temple alum | columnist at Uloop News | writer at Top5Must & KnowPhilly | photographer | food blogger

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