- Elon Musk, Investor & Entrepreneur
Business isn’t all about numbers and charts. It’s also about the people who make up your business. As humans, we all have mental health we need to be aware of, in addition to physical. But far too few employers focus on mental health in regard to their business operations, resulting in high employee turnover and low satisfaction within their organization.
Here’s why you should be focusing on mental health in business regardless of your industry.
MENTAL HEALTH IMPACTS YOUR BOTTOM LINE
Many of the most business-focused people are only concerned about the bottom line for their company or endeavor. But while any successful business has to be concerned with overall profitability and productivity, ignoring mental health for the sake of these bottom lines is foolhardy.
The fact is mental health can dramatically impact the bottom line of any business because it impacts the human element required for every business regardless of industry.
Businesses are made up of people. Just like you wouldn’t run your business with people who were constantly sick from physical illnesses, you shouldn’t run your business without having measures in place to handle mental illness.
Far from being a buzzword, mental illness is something that affects millions of people across the world. Although the symptoms are often invisible, mental illness can affect:
- employee productivity
- employee happiness and morale, which can spread throughout the office or company
- business relations between your people and your clients
- creativity and problem-solving abilities
- promptness or scheduling
- and more
If you don’t focus on mental health to some extent, your business will eventually suffer. People won’t show up to work, or they won’t do very good work when they do come to the office. Even if they show up, they might treat others poorly, make mistakes, or have other negative side effects as a result of their poor mental health.
FOCUSING ON MENTAL HEALTH PROVIDES BENEFITS ACROSS THE BOARD
Employees with good mental health are a boon to your organization, full stop. But even if an employee starts with good mental health, they might eventually lose it if your workplace doesn’t provide a healthy environment.
Here are some reasons why mental health can benefit your business:
- It inspires higher productivity and motivation from your employees. If your employees feel secure and valued at work, they’ll work more efficiently and try to do better work
- Employees won’t be late as often. Many people miss work or are late to work because of stress or other mental health-related issues. If your workplace is a positive environment, people will be more inspired to show up on time every day
- It’s cheaper, too. Indeed, if you have mental health aspects in your healthcare plan, your employees will spend more time at work instead of more time at the hospital or getting treatment for their unsupported issues
- Employees will be more loyal to your organization if mental health is prioritized. Any business that encourages employee mental health will experience less turnover. This, in turn, lowers your overall recruitment and training costs. It’s much more cost-effective to keep three excellent employees than it is to burn through the same three employees and have to hire three new ones in just a couple of months
- Workplace relations will be much stronger, both between your employees and between them and your clients. Everyone can tell when a business is a great place to work out. Your clients will love doing business with you and your employees if they’re happier, of course.
As you can imagine, all of these benefits can positively impact your bottom line and result in a more productive, more innovative, and more welcoming company for everyone. In short, there’s no reason not to focus on mental health when failing to do so comes with so negative side effects. Focusing on mental health provides so many benefits across the board.
HOW TO MAKE A MENTAL HEALTH-FRIENDLY WORKPLACE
The good news is that every business can make a mental health-friendly workplace just by focusing on a few key initiatives. It’s not the place of every company to become qualified for the treatment of mental illness, of course. But there’s no doubt that some workplaces are better for mental health than others.
Here’s what you should do to make your workplace a better place for yours and your employees’ mental health.
It’s always important that you welcome any job applicants that are well-qualified for a position, regardless of race, sex, orientation, or any other demographic. Discrimination against an individual because of one of their demographic qualities can present a serious toll to that individual’s mental health.
FOCUS ON WORK-LIFE BALANCE
Sometimes it pays to focus on work to the exclusion of other aspects in life, but not always. In fact, workplaces that prioritize mental health will emphasize a work-life balance for all their employees. Don’t force your employees to work overtime or stay beyond a reasonable hour.
Similarly, your employees should feel that they can take vacation time or step out of the office when the situation calls for it. Employees that don’t feel like they can ask for time off eventually feel trapped by their workplace.
HAVE A HEALTH CARE PROGRAM THAT PROMOTES MENTAL WELLNESS
You should also make sure that mental health treatment and wellness aspects are included in your company’s health care and daily culture. We all face ongoing mental health challenges, but you can encourage your team to be open about any struggles they are facing. You can offer courses for your team on how to manage stress and anxiety and provide links to resources where they can find a Mind Coach to help them be stronger mentally.
PROVIDE TRAINING FOR MANAGERS
Any managers or front-line supervisors you hire need to be aware of mental health and constantly work at providing a healthy environment for your employees. This means focusing on social issues, ensuring worker stress doesn’t get too high and giving feedback in a positive and specific manner.
Managers can have a huge impact on the overall mental health of an office. It’s important that they take mental health as seriously as you do.
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Thought leaders & celebrities share their tactics for success on the Lisnic podcast by Lisa Teh & Nick Bell