‘Investing in Mental Health is a Win-Win’
Happy employees and sustainable productivity.
Mental health is an increasingly discussed topic in the workplace. As companies realize that emotional and psychological wellness isn’t an issue you can simply put a band-aid on, they are investing in comprehensive programs that support the health of not just their employees, but also the health and longevity of the entire company.
Millennials, who place work-life integration at the top of their workplace values, have brought constant connectivity and long hours to today’s work culture, and all of the overworking is taking its toll. The Finnish Institute of Occupational Health found that employees who consistently log long hours are more likely to develop heart disease, substance abuse issues, and depression. In response to this worrying trend, some companies are starting to provide mental health first-aid to its personnel. These trained mental health providers are designated to serve as a first responder for employees who are struggling with depression, anxiety, substance abuse, or psychosis. By adjusting work culture to be more understanding of mental health issues, employees can feel comfortable getting the care they need, and improve their work quality and satisfaction in the long run. Investing in mental health support shows how much a company values its team — and it’s a win-win for everyone: happy employees and sustainable productivity!
a.) Workplace Mental Health by the Numbers
The World Health Organization estimates that 200 million days are lost from work annually due to mental health issues in the United States alone, costing employers upwards of $100 billion.
b.) Paying It Forward
Unilever invests in the wellbeing of its 172,000 employees by providing managers with mental health training to promote emotional and physical health of their staff. The company’s Sustainable Living Plan is dedicated to improviång the wellbeing of a billion people around the world, including their own employees.
- “By listening and responding to [Unilever employees] emotional needs we give people a much better chance of fulfilling their true potential, which is good for them and good for the company.” –Paul Polman, CEO, Unilever
c.) Employee Wellness Programs
American Express supports employees through Healthy Living, a program that provides free life coaches, exercise and meditation classes, and on-site therapy.