A strong company culture plays a significant role in employee happiness and productivity. It’s something more employers and business owners need to pay attention to since an estimated 83% of American workers struggle with work-related stress. That kind of stress leads to less productivity in the workplace and can cause employee retention to suffer.
More importantly, it can wreak havoc on the mental health of those employees, contributing to everything from anxiety to depression. Employees are feeling the effects, and a rising number of people are scouring search engines for “how to be happy at work.”
As a leader within your company, it’s your responsibility to destigmatize mental health issues and create a supportive workplace community for your employees struggling with mental health issues. Luckily, there are ways you can bring a mentally healthy culture to life, ensuring your employees that their workplace is a safe space. Let’s cover three actionable steps you can start taking immediately.
1. Foster a Healthy Work-Life Balance
Even if your company is strictly in-person, you can take some business lessons from freelancers. One of the biggest benefits of freelancing is establishing a healthier work-life balance. Freelancers set their own hours and work when it’s convenient so they have more time to spend with family and friends and to do the things they enjoy.
By improving the work-life balance in your business, you’ll enjoy several benefits, including:
- Greater employee retention
- Enhanced performance
- Reduced employee anxiety
- An improved office environment
Plus, your company will be more attractive to job seekers if they know they’ll still be able to enjoy their free time without feeling the pressure of work constantly looming over them. Consider implementing more flexible schedules, offering more time off, or allowing hybrid positions that allow employees to work from home for a few days each week. Or, let your employees set their own hours. You might be surprised by how much gets done.
2. Create a Safe Space
One of the most important things you can do for your employees is to make them feel safe and comfortable in the workplace. Talk about your interest in mental health and offer as much assistance as possible to anyone willing to open up. That might include something as simple as providing a listening ear and support to those in need.
Or, you could take things one step further by offering an Employee Assistance Program or covering mental health services in your employee benefits packages. Encouraging your employees to open up about their struggles and seek out help when they need it can help break through the stigma in many industries.
3. Encourage Self-care
As the old saying goes, “you can’t pour from an empty cup.” You can’t expect your employees to perform well if they’re burnt out or struggling with their mental well-being. By encouraging self-care in the workplace and at home, you’re also encouraging employees to prioritize their mental and physical health.
Some of the most accessible forms of self-care include:
- Daily hygiene
- Preventative care services
- Physical activity
- Quality sleep
- Nutritious diets
- Mindfulness practices
You can’t track how your employees practice self-care every moment of the day. However, you can promote self-care by offering free gym memberships or providing healthy snacks in the workplace. Small moments of personal care can go a long way in helping your employees build better self-care habits.
Not only will stressed, burnt-out, and anxious employees cost your business time, money, and productivity, but not focusing on mental health will create a toxic and unhealthy environment in your workplace. Put these ideas into practice to improve your company culture and show your employees that you support their mental well-being.
About the Author: Dan Matthews is a writer, content consultant, and conservationist. While Dan writes on a variety of topics, he loves to focus on issues that look inward on humanity, and that help make the surrounding world a better place to reside. When Dan isn’t working on new content, you can find him with a coffee cup in one hand while searching for new music with the other.
Image Source: Unsplash
The opinions and views expressed in any guest blog post do not necessarily reflect those of www.rtor.org or its sponsor, Laurel House, Inc. The author and www.rtor.org have no affiliations with any products or services mentioned in the article or linked to therein. Guest Authors may have affiliations to products mentioned or linked to in their author bios.
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