With April being recognised as Stress Awareness Month since 1992, it's a timely opportunity for employers to take note and provide assistance to their workforce. This year, Mental Health UK is focusing on strategies for managing mental health and wellbeing in the workplace,
"This aligns with recent findings from a survey conducted by ACAS and YouGov!"
The study found that a staggering 63% of British workers are feeling stressed due to the rising cost of living. Now, more than ever, it is crucial for employers to be aware of the impact of stress on their employees and implement effective strategies to support their mental health.
This blog post will discuss the guidance provided by ACAS for employers and employees alike, highlighting the importance of communication, support, and practical advice. We will also explore the advice from Mental Health UK on how managers can promote a healthy and supportive work environment by leading by example and fostering resilience among their teams.
According to Acas, employers can better manage staff mental health by implementing the following strategies:
Be approachable, available, and encourage your team to talk to you if they're having problems
Maintain regular contact with your team to check on their wellbeing
Respect confidentiality and provide a calm, patient, supportive, and reassuring environment for staff members who wish to discuss their mental health
Clearly communicate the internal and external support available to staff
Look after your own mental health and seek support if you feel under more pressure than usual. This support could come from a colleague at work, a mental health network, or a counsellor.
Consider offering practical help, such as signposting to relevant advice or inviting advice providers into the workplace.
Mental Health UK also provides valuable advice for managers to ensure their teams are prioritising their wellbeing and building resilience against stress. They emphasise the importance of leading by example and encouraging employees to look out for each other, not just within their team, but also with colleagues at different levels of the organisation.
For employees, Acas recommends the following steps to support their mental health and wellbeing:
Talk to colleagues or friends about how you're feeling
Speak to your manager about your situation and emotional state
Reflect on what helps you feel more positive and what does not
Make time for activities you enjoy
Check with your employer about the support available at work
The cost of living crisis poses a significant challenge to both employers and employees, making it essential for organisations to prioritise mental health and wellbeing. By following the guidance provided by ACAS and Mental Health UK, employers can foster a supportive work environment that encourages open communication, practical assistance, and a strong sense of camaraderie among staff members.
"Addressing employee stress during these trying times is a smart business decision!"
Employers who take the initiative to support their employees' mental health will not only improve the overall wellbeing of their workforce, but also reap the benefits of increased productivity, loyalty, and a more positive work environment. Let's use Stress Awareness Month as an opportunity to implement these strategies and create a more resilient, supportive, and mentally healthy workplace for all.
Remember, a healthy and engaged workforce is a vital asset that will contribute to the long-term success and growth of any organisation.
Until next time ...
ROGER EDDOWES Business Godparent
Would you like to know more?
If anything I've written in this blog post resonates with you and you'd like to discover more about managing mental health and wellbeing in the workplace, it may be a great idea to call me on 01908 774320 and let's see how I can help.
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Roger trained at Edward Thomas Peirson & Sons in Market Harborough before working at Hartwell & Co, followed by Chancery, as a partner. He started Essendon Accounts and Tax with Helen Beaumont in 2014 as a general practitioner with a hands-on approach.
Roger loves getting his hands dirty, working with emerging, small-to-medium and family businesses to ensure they receive the best possible accountancy advice. Roger utilises an extensive network of business contacts to leverage the best guidance and practical solutions.
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