16 Oct Conversation on Mental Health
People that are well…do well.
Despite knowing this statement to be true, the workplace remains an environment where pressure and stress levels continue to rise, burnout is a known outcome and mental health issues keep increasing.
The current work environment encourages long working days, treats billable hours are a mark of busyness, defines external performance targets and insists on having electronic devices at hand for employees to utilise a 24-hour cycle. All this and more to achieve success, job security and satisfaction. Unfortunately, employee wellbeing, happiness and health are not always partners in this approach.
Could it be we have got it all wrong…do we need to flip the status quo?
How would your business cope if you put wellness and wellbeing first? Could you create new reference points for employees and your business? Could this bring about a fundamental shift to achieve better engagement, less turnover, higher levels of performance and ultimately better business? The research indicates this can happen.
We all agree that the health and wellbeing in general, as well as the mental health of our Aussie workforces is of concern. People may well be struggling on their own. We need to change things. Early connection and intervention in the workplace will help shorten the time needed to address these issues.
Doing nothing is not an option. It will undermine your own health and performance as well as that of the employees and your organisation.
Leaders within organisations who get on the front foot to help develop a healthier work environment, recognise and respond to early warning signs or have a support system in place for employees to access…are the leaders of choice.
We are fortunate enough to work with Stephen Lamond – MD at Thompson and Redwood in Perth. Stephen is not an expert in mental health matters but wants his employees to have access to such support. When he sees an employee struggling or has a team member who is having difficulties, they can utilise one of the many different support mechanisms available to them. One method is having a team of “professionals on tap” – and they are available to support his employees.
These specific support offerings have been utilised most months in the first phase of the program we are running with Thompson and Redwood.
Research shows that people who feel valued and supported at work – perform better, are more engaged and stay with the organisation for longer. They also generally have better health profiles.
The complementary data we have on the general heart health of the employees at Thompson and Redwood, reflects a profound improvement over the first 6 months. There is a 49% reduction in the high-risk heart health factors and a 14% increase in the desired low-risk factors. When we compare the results of individuals who have completed the full six months of the program the results are remarkable. Their reduction in high risk factors increases to 67% and there is a 40% increase in the low risk factors.
One could argue these wonderful changes have occurred because an MD took more than the average level of interest in his employees. He has started and maintained a conversation around all things – health, wellbeing and performance with a special focus on mental health.
Stephen Lamond understands that when his employees are well…they will do well.
If this “professionals on tap” approach appeals to you then get in contact so that we can help you blend it into your offering to employees.
Source: Hazlewood F: Why mental health conversation is critical for success, The Weekend Australian, August 5/6, 2023.