Employee mental health is an important subject and one that any business should not overlook. Looking after your employees can benefit your business in many ways, such as improving staff retention reducing sick leave. Below we look at how you can support employee mental health and how your business can benefit from this.
Understanding Mental Health And FMLA
Before getting into the benefits and ways you can support employee mental health, you must understand the laws around mental health in the workplace, especially when it comes to FMLA. The Family and Medical Leave Act is a law that protects the mental health and wellbeing of your employees.
If an employee has mental health concerns, they may be eligible for FMLA leave, usually for a maximum of 12 weeks. This means your HR department needs to know what is covered under FMLA and what is not. If you don’t have a large HR department, you may have considered FMLA outsourcing to help with situations such as these. This article from Pulpstream discusses the pros and cons of outsourcing for your business and employees, as well as logical steps to improve your FMLA protocols and use biofunctional health solutions.
As work is somewhere we spend most of our time, it helps if a business is adaptable and flexible to the needs of their employees. This may be different for each of your employees, so encourage them to talk to you if they need different working hours or shifts to make their lives easier and more livable. When we suffer from a poor work-life balance, our mental health will continue to deteriorate and employees may look for a job that is more flexible, such as a remote position.
If your business can get behind the new work-from-home culture, you will be able to support employees from the comfort of their own homes. This cuts out long commutes and enables employees to work around other commitments. A hybrid working environment may also be beneficial, as employees have a few days in the office where they can connect and socialize with one another.
Foster A Healthy Company Culture
A healthy company culture is a wonderful way to support the mental health of your employees, as you find ways to engage workers. Having an open-door policy will also encourage employees to talk to managers if they need help or are struggling with something. Know what your company values are and make sure they encompass everything you do, including the care of your employees.
When developing a great company culture, start with the people at the top. Excellent managers will create a healthy working environment. Provide your managers with the training, information, and time they need to take care of their team. Create goals of what you want to accomplish through your company culture, such as better employee engagement or lower turnover.
Check In With Your Employees
You should always check in with your employees no matter how big your business gets. Whether you do this yourself or ask your managers to do this for you, showing that you care will improve employee retention and make employees feel more comfortable discussing personal things that may impact their work. We all have a home life, and this can come into the workplace at times despite our best efforts, it is about learning how to deal with these so we can get back into a working state of mind, rather than ignoring the problems and pushing them far out of reach.
Start weekly or bi-weekly meetings with your teams, so employees get the chance to talk about what has been going on for them at work and outside of it. Create monthly individual meetings, where managers can go over goals and generally check in with each employee. If you do have remote employees, you want to be checking in at least once a day, even for a quick hello.
Benefits Of Supporting Employee Mental Health
There are many benefits of supporting employee mental health, both for your business and your employees. Showing your employees that you care should be a high priority for your business if you want to reduce turnover and improve employee retention. This will also improve employee motivation, increasing productivity and overall job satisfaction.
The number of sick days is likely to go down too, as you find a way to support employees and create a work-life balance that works for them. If you are looking to retain top talent, caring for their mental health is the first step.
As a business, you can support employee mental health by offering flexibility, fostering a healthy company culture, and regularly checking in with all employees. This can improve employee satisfaction and retention and lead to a better working environment for everyone.