Even two years since the onset of the pandemic, the emotional wellbeing of employees is a struggle across all levels within an organization. Within the C-suite, nearly 70% of executives report being concerned about the impact of stress and burnout on their organizations1, and only 33% of managers are well-equipped to refer employees to mental health resources2. Leaders also perceive that their employees are still feeling the effects, with 39% reporting that employee emotional wellbeing has declined.3
Ninety-one percent of employees believe that a company's culture should support mental health.4 Organizations are taking note and investing in emotional wellbeing support for their people. The next evolution of supporting employee emotional wellbeing is infusing your organization with an emotionally supportive culture.
7 ways you can take action for mental health
- Encourage employees to get a mental health checkup or a "checkup from the neck up,"5just like an annual physical. If you already promote a physical health checkup, begin promoting mental health checkups in the same way.
- Talk to your health plan carrier about mental health parity within your health plan. Ask for any available communications that highlight how your health plan covers the care people need for mental health and substance misuse conditions.
- Check with your vendor partners about the background of their mental health providers. Look for culturally diverse providers to align with your population's cultural identity and varying specific therapeutic expertise. During the vendor search process, ask questions surrounding the providers' cultural backgrounds and experience working with people with different belief systems, values, attitudes and life experiences.
- Reduce stigma within your organization by sharing — and allowing others to share — stories to help normalize and accept different struggles across the organization. Leverage resources like "Seven Steps to Telling Your Story "6 from the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).
- Open up dialogue with your employees by asking what types of emotional wellbeing programs or resources they would use. Find out what is most useful and meaningful to them via surveys or focus groups.
- Educate managers about mental health conditions and how to listen with compassion and manage with empathy. Consider preparing them with formalized mental health first-aid training. Arm your managers with information about available emotional wellbeing resources so they are able to direct their team members to a resource when they need it.
- Supplement your current resources to promote Mental Health Month with national resources including:
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — Resources — How Right Now
- Mental Health America — Mental Health Month — Back to Basics
- National Alliance on Mental Illness — Together for Mental Health
As you explore ways to promote mental health awareness and action at your workplace, Gallagher is here to help. The Physical & Emotional Wellbeing Consulting team at Gallagher can offer ideas for Mental Health Month and help you dive deeper into an emotional wellbeing action plan for your organization long term. Reach out to Gallagher today to get a conversation started.