Providing mental health support for your employees is no longer an optional benefit. It’s a necessity for a healthy, productive workforce. Whether your team is 100% remote, hybrid, or fully in-person, it’s essential to provide wellness benefits that include easy access to mental health services.
Stressed Out Employees?
The last few years have been a roller coaster. Everyone has been impacted by the pandemic, politics, inflation, and social injustice. All in addition to the normal stress that comes with work and life. It can be a lot to handle!
No matter the reason, consistently experiencing high levels of stress creates side effects that directly impact your employees’ work performance, including:
- Lack of motivation or focus
- Feeling overwhelmed and/or anxious
- Drug and/or alcohol misuse
- Social withdrawal
Employees who experience mental health issues—and feel they have no support from their employer—are more likely to struggle with these side effects. Which can lead to less productivity, conflict with colleagues, repeatedly taking unplanned PTO, requiring short-term disability, or even quitting their job.
The good news is this can be prevented.
3 Ways to Provide Mental Health Support to Your Employees
1. Offer an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) to all employees
A top-tier employee assistance program, like Carebridge, provides a set number of mental health counseling sessions at no cost to your employees or their family members. A toll free hotline is available 24-7 (including holidays) so immediate help is always available.
Comprehensive EAPs also provide work-life services for child care, parenting, education planning, elder care, legal concerns, and financial wellbeing. As well as digital tools for mindfulness, stress relief, and self-led behavioral change.
2. Provide leadership training to increase empathy and emotional intelligence.
A company’s culture and tone are set by the leadership team. In a culture built on fear, employees are more likely to hide mistakes, lie, burnout, or quit. But organizations that actively commit to training their leadership team in empathy and emotional intelligence have shown an increase in workforce civility, empathy, productivity, job satisfaction, and employee retention.
3. Decrease the stigma around mental health.
People often avoid seeking help because they think it’s only a “last resort.” This creates preventable side effects from getting worse due to the delay in care. And delayed care can result in higher healthcare costs, missed work, and/or requiring short-term or long-term disability. A trained leadership team can help change the narrative around mental health by:
- Leading with empathy and kindness
- Talking about their own personal experiences, if comfortable
- Normalizing and championing the use of your EAP
- Offering mental health days
- Reviewing company policies around PTO requests