It has always been important to support your employees in maintaining a sense of positive mental wellbeing, but with the Covid-19 pandemic having taken a heavy toll on many, it’s now more essential than ever.
Prior to the pandemic, one in six workers were experiencing a mental health problem at any one time.
Now, while the full impact of the pandemic is still unknown, BMJ predicts that ‘the mental health impact of the pandemic is likely to last much longer than the physical health impact’ and ‘there will be no vaccine for these mental health impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic’.
It is, undoubtedly, the time to check in with your employees and ensure that you are supporting them with their mental health to the best of your ability. But navigating this topic can feel daunting, as reflected by a WorkLife by OpenMoney survey in which one in five (21%) employers felt concerned about helping staff manage the long-term mental health impact of the pandemic.
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7 things to look for in mental health training
Mental health training has the most significant impact on your employees when it focuses on growing awareness and building a positive culture of support, empathy, and treating others well. Within this environment, colleagues are empowered to build resilience and recognise when others need support.
Looking out for these seven factors will ensure you get the most from whichever training option you choose:
1. Building awareness
Mental health training can help employees become more aware of what can help or harm the wellbeing of themselves and others, whether this is at work or in the home.
2. Challenging stigma
Through discussions and exercises, mental health training can break down stigma to demonstrate how prevalent mental health problems are. Trainers can also help encourage empathy by asking employees to imagine or remember a situation that could have impacted on their own mental wellbeing.
3. Building coping strategies
While we know it’s not always possible to remove everything that can be detrimental to our mental health, training can help individuals build resilience to stress. The strategies learnt on a course can help reduce the impact of stress, optimising people’s wellbeing both at home and at work.
4. Encouraging an open culture
By learning together as a group and sharing their vulnerabilities, employees are encouraged to see their colleagues in a relatable way, which can in turn help foster openness in the workplace.
5. Encouraging Champions for Change
Taking part in mental health training can help employees picture ways in which they could become advocates for change in the workplace.
6. Understanding how to best support others
It can sometimes be difficult to know the right thing to do or say to help someone, even if we have the best intentions. Mental health training provides the tools to know how to have helpful, kind conversations around mental wellbeing and spot when others may need more specialised support.
7. Building teams which prioritise wellbeing
Managers play an essential role in fostering positive wellbeing in their team. Mental health training can help managers understand how to build team resilience and recognise factors that can help or hinder wellbeing.
Topics: Mental health & wellbeing