Your company’s greatest asset is its people and while you may be remunerating your staff well, have you done a check in to see if your employees are ok, or even better, if they’re thriving? Have you put strategies in place to boost staff mental health, resilience and wellbeing? Why is it so important to think about their wellbeing? Because it’s costing you if you don’t.
Nearly three million Australians live with depression and/or anxiety* and according to the State of Mental Health in Australian Workplaces report in 2016, one in five Australian employees report that they have taken time off work due to feeling mentally unwell in the past 12 months**. The cost to Australian workplaces is significant. It’s estimated that untreated mental health conditions are costing approximately $10.9 billion per year***.
Businesses of all sizes are impacted by mental health and therefore the cost is impacting your business too. For a long time now, businesses have put strategies in place for dealing with employee sickness and mental health challenges but it’s only in more recent times that businesses have been thinking about the prevention rather than cure.
The fact is, these problems are not going away. Organisations exist in rapidly changing and competitive environments. Market players, processes and systems are constantly evolving, resulting in ever increasing workplace demands and pressures. This is why, getting on the front foot and being proactive with looking after your employee’s wellbeing is critical to your business success.
So what does this wellbeing strategy look like? It’s not just a simple team building exercise that will do the trick or converting the boardroom into a ping pong table. While there’s no one size fits all approach, every business needs strategies in place that help your people recognise the cause of stress and worry, how to deal with it and ways to work together to bring out the strengths of the team. Here are some things to think about when you’re building the mental health strategy for your business:
- Start by identifying unhelpful stress coping behaviours such as procrastination, over preparing, being passive or aggressive
- Provide effective ways to manage and reduce worry
- Empower team cohesion with effective communication techniques
- Increase productivity with time management strategies
- Build awareness of the mind body connection and the importance of physical activity and good eating habits
If you need support with developing the mental health and wellbeing strategy for your organisation, please get in touch with us today.
*Australian Bureau of Statistics. (2008). National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing: Summary of Results, 2007. Cat. no. (4326.0)
**The State of Mental Health in Australian Workplaces study by TNS and Beyond Blue 2016
***PwC. (2014) ‘Creating a mentally healthy workplace: return on investment analysis’.