Why Should Companies Invest in Mental Healthcare of Employees to Improve Workplace Wellness?
It’s time for companies to invest in mental healthcare for the wellbeing of their employees. The higher number of young population in India suffers from mental stress that causes less engagement and productivity at the workplace. It also increases the healthcare cost of the organization.
As per the World Health Organization, mental illness adversely impacts the behavior of an employee at workplace, and if it is not treated in a right way, takes the form of mental disability. The past history also does not contain the good statistics of handling mental illness by the companies. The rate of practising the best tactics for lowering the mental stress at workplace is so poor that it impacts the overall productivity of the business over a period of time.
The big challenge for an employee as well as employers in not handling the mental wellbeing in the right manner is the fear of being rejected socially. Employees suffering from mental illness usually do not disclose their issue with the employer due to the social stigma attached to them. Some employees assume that revealing the reason in front of employers may cause their termination from job position.
The report suggests that mental illness may result in a huge loss in terms of reduced workplace engagement and business outcome if not diagnosed and handled by employers. Studies have found that victims of mental illness often suffer from sleep disorders, emotional wellness that causes lack of alertness and concentration while performing duties in the workplace. In the long run, such kind of employees will increase the cost of a company by increasing the rate of presenteeism, absenteeism or extended sick leaves.
Most of the time no action is taken by the employers in response to the capture of mental illness because they remain unaware of the situation that adversely impacts the business. The same happens with employees as well most of the time as they do not consider mental illness as one of the diseases and never ask for any expert help. This makes the situation worsened and proper diagnosis does not take place.
Here are some ways how employers can help their people to fight with mental health issues:
♦ Be open to discussing mental issues:
Employers must address these issues by starting an open dialogue with their employees. Generally, the people suffering from mental illness, do not want to disclose the reality of the concern because they think it may cause their boycott by the society or it would make them unfit for the job responsibilities. An open and healthy conversation between employers and employees regarding the concern would play a vital role in bringing them out of the worst situation.
♦ Focus on Prevention:
As an employer, you must work on the prevention part in order to make the issue too big to handle. You must start running stress management activities at work so people start practicing it before they completely seized in the worst situation of mental illness and increase the cost to the company.
♦ Provide Access to Health Resources:
Most of the time employers may not be able to know that any of the employees suffer from mental illness but there should be proper stress relieving resources available in the workplace which can address the issue. This is the responsibility of the hr department to make the required resources available to the employees. Employees can take help from the resources at any time they feel stressed. The resources can include the arrangement of wellness counselor once in a week or the premium access of online communities to employees.
♦ Support Healthy Workplace Culture:
As an employer, you must support a healthy lifestyle at the workplace. Researchers have identified that employees spend 60% of their life at work so it is the responsibility of the company management to create a happy and productive work environment. Many workplace wellness activities are low cost or no cost is involved with them, can be designed in order to bring the survivals out of mental illness.