Does your organisation prioritise the mental wellbeing of its staff? Are there any initiatives in place to promote mental health and support those who need it? If so, have your coworkers been made aware of them? Recent research has indicated that many employees feel their superiors are not cognizant of their mental health. A Forbes survey reported that 82 percent of IT professionals in the United States experienced burnout when working from home. 80 percent of respondents said that they would consider leaving their current workplace for one that takes mental health seriously. Additionally, Oxford University’s Said Business School conducted research which concluded that employees with higher levels of morale are more productive.
We’ll look at why workers feel ignored, what’s occurring as a consequence, and how employers might counter the burnout trend in this article:
Frequent communication helps to lessen feelings of lonelinessStudies indicate that loneliness is a widespread issue among remote employees, which can potentially lead to exhaustion and turnover. To counteract this, organisations should implement strategies to facilitate informal interaction between workers. Managers should prioritise the creation of a culture of connectedness by regularly checking in with their employees. Virtual coffee breaks and “watercooler” channels could be used to encourage conversations during work hours, while virtual lunch hours could be an effective way to build social bonds. Additionally, communication channels should be employed to promote community engagement in remote workforces.
Conduct mental health surveys and sessions on a regular basisMany employees report not having the resources needed to effectively manage the stress associated with their jobs. Employee mental health surveys can be used to identify potential signs of distress and provide data to inform modifications to company policies that would enhance employees’ overall well-being. Connecting staff with mental health professionals on a regular basis can help them to avoid burnout and stress. In addition, it can also provide remote workers with the tools needed to create a healthy and productive work environment. Incorporating mental health coverage into health care plans is another way of improving employees’ mental health. It is important for managers to ensure that shame and stigma do not prevent workers from taking advantage of mental health services they are entitled to, and instead to promote and normalise the use of these services.
Encourage frequent breaks and vacationsResearch shows that remote workers tend to work an average of 1.4 days more per month than their in-office counterparts. Unfortunately, this inability to disconnect from work can have a negative effect on their mental health, leading to burnout. To combat this problem, it is essential for organisations to create a remote work plan that includes frequent breaks. In fact, a survey revealed that 37 percent of remote employees felt that regular breaks were beneficial for helping them to refocus and relax. To further support the health and wellbeing of remote workers, employers may consider offering fitness stipends to cover the costs associated with physical activities.
Allow workers to set their own working hoursEmployees who are able to have flexible working hours may benefit from increased creativity, morale, and productivity. According to a survey, seventy percent of workers stated that a job would be more appealing to them if it provided flexibility in their schedule, and ninety percent reported that it would help to boost their morale. Additionally, the majority of those surveyed indicated that having flexible hours reduced their stress levels and increased their productivity. As having flexible hours allows employees to work when they are most productive, it also provides a healthy boundary between work and home life.
Additionally, introducing flexible working arrangements for remote personnel may assist in the eventual decrease of employee attrition. To guarantee that these types of schedules are effective, it is essential for supervisors and remote staff to work together to create achievable and measurable goals. This approach redirects the focus away from the hours spent by remote employees and towards the results they are able to deliver.
Managers and leaders should be given mental health trainingDue to the lack of in-person contact and feedback, remote employees often express concern regarding their job performance. Moreover, a survey of global workers found that approximately 40% had not been asked by anyone at their company how they were coping since the onset of the pandemic. Those surveyed who had not been asked about their wellbeing were 38% more likely to report a decline in their mental health.
As managers, it is essential to demonstrate empathy towards our team members. To ensure that the team is doing well both professionally and personally, it is important to organise regular meetings with each team member. Organisations that initiate conversations on mental health can build a sense of solidarity between the leaders and their employees; it helps foster the belief that the team is genuinely invested in the welfare and success of each individual.
Organisations have a responsibility to provide support for their employees’ mental health and wellbeing. Research conducted by the World Health Organisation (WHO) has found that for every one dollar invested in scaled-up treatment for mental health issues in the workplace, there is a four-dollar return in increased health and productivity. In order to foster a healthy and stress-free work environment, employers should consider implementing practices such as flexible hours, regular check-ins, and mental health training. These steps are likely to minimise absenteeism and increase overall productivity.