It’s important to ask.

How are your employees doing? Not with regard to job performance, but with regard to their mental health.

Many employers fear that is too personal a question to ask. But “How are you doing?” is an important first step to ensuring your team’s wellbeing and long-term success. It’s also the right thing to do.

Did you know that employees miss an average of 27 days a year due to mental health struggles? Or that 22% admit to using alcohol or drugs while at work? Both statistics are likely surprising and higher than you imagined. Now consider that these are levels identified before the COVID-19 situation even started.

During MJ’s recent InspireYOU webinar, Mental Health in the Workplace, Cynthia Reynolds, LCSW, LCAC, of Reynolds and Associates Counseling, shared those two statistics and many more to highlight the absolute need for employers to provide more support for mental health awareness and services. If you weren’t able to attend the original webinar, you can anytime it’s convenient by visiting our On-Demand Webinars page.

Knowing that mental health is a bigger threat than cancer, heart disease or diabetes, it’s imperative that every employer develop and continue to update a library of resources. This can include:

  • Counseling through an Employee Assistance program or local community counselors
    • Provide employees a list of those services covered by your insurance plan along with easy-to-access contact information.
  • A standing contract with a community counselor to provide quick employee access
  • Telehealth counseling services
  • On-site programming and special events coordinated through a local mental health center or hospital
  • In-office and digital signs sharing statics about mental health or tips for improving mental wellbeing
  • Management encouragement to use available resources and open discussion to let employees know that they don’t have to face struggles alone
  • Flexible attendance policies to support needed counseling
  • Manager education to help identify signs of mental health issues in the workplace and how to initiate a discussion
  • Prominent display of emergency or 9-1-1 services for life-threatening situations

MJ can help with additional ideas and help you establish an effective mental health awareness program. Contact your MJ Consultant or Client Executive to get started.