How to Protect Workers’ Mental Health

June 7, 2022

By Damian Phillips

Failing to implement steps to protect workers’ mental health can drastically affect an employer’s performance, with studies showing that stressed workers are significantly less productive and that poor mental health is generally the leading cause of lost working days in the UK.

Whilst more and more businesses are now placing a greater focus on fostering a healthy working environment where workers’ mental health is prioritised, many can still do more.

What can negatively affect workers’ mental health?

  • Unrealistic demands from senior staff, such as an unreasonable workload and undue pressure to meet deadlines;

  • Lack of support and training to properly perform a role;

  • Failure to appropriately remunerate workers commensurate to their experience and effort;

  • Poor communication and a lack of transparency from management;

  • Feeling under appreciated by a lack of opportunity for promotion.

What steps can employers take to protect workers’ mental health?

  •  Encourage open and honest dialogue with workers to properly understand any issues they may be facing in their role. In doing so, employers can determine how to provide the necessary support in managing issues affecting workers’ mental health. Research has shown that workers who feel that their voice is heard are over 4 times more likely to perform their best work.

  • Ensuring workers have a sensible work-life balance by not expecting them to work long hours, setting unrealistic expectations or allocating an excessive amount of work to any one individual. Employers should also ensure that workers feel able to (and do) take their allotted annual leave.

  • Implementing different ways of working, for example by allowing workers to follow a hybrid model of office based and remote working, minimising potential stressors for workers including the need to commute each day.

  • Consider conducting periodic surveys to establish ways and means of improving workers’ experiences at work. Consultation with workers is key to creating a happy workforce.

Please get in touch with Damian Phillips on 02920 829 126 or for a free, no-obligation chat about the above.

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