Mental health is a leadership priority
It’s no secret that we spend a lot of our time at work. If you’re particularly diligent with your schedule, you might even say that we spend one third of our lives working. As such a huge chunk of our lives, it’s no wonder that our work can have an impact on our mental health.
It’s important to remember that an organisation that prioritises mental health is not necessarily an organisation that promotes relentless positivity. It can be easy to see ‘fun workplaces’ and think that the culture is amazing, but the reality is that life and work isn’t always sunshine and rainbows.
Prioritising mental health is about providing for and supporting your team through the ups and downs. The World Health Organisation defines mental health as: “The state of wellbeing in which every individual realises his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.”
The challenges of 2020 have brought this balance into sharp focus. This year has seen organisations put practices in place to alleviate stress, where possible, for their teams and the emotional benefits of working from home have been realised for many.
How can you shape the mental health culture of your organisation?
Changing the culture of an organisation is no easy task, especially because humans are reluctant to change the way they do things. Leaders have such an important role to play when it comes to maintaining the mental health of employees. Leaders often have influence over the policies and practices in an organisation and, as a leader, it should be your priority to make sure these are being written and implemented in a way that advocates for the mental health of your team.
It’s also your responsibility to make sure everyone is adapting those policies and practices. Changes made at the top are a great start but the changes also need to filter down through the organisation in the way that your team talks to each other and the expectations they have of each other.
What do you stand to gain from advocating for mental health best practices?
The driving result of making mental health a priority in your organisation is that your team will be happier and more engaged with their work. As a result, your team can be more productive as they achieve great results.
When you create a culture that respects and advocates for mental health, you also create a desirable workplace with a reputation for caring for employees, meaning that when it comes time to hire more people onto your team, you’ll attract the right candidates that will continue to contribute to this positive culture.
Are you ready to prioritise mental health in your organisation? People Make the Difference can help. To find out more, visit www.pmtd.com.au or call us on 0412 333 415. Try our online leadership training videos – $99 for complete access. Great value if you’re committed to growing your leadership potential.