Employees are an organisation’s biggest asset, so it’s important, and beneficial to all, to take care of their physical and mental health.
Which is why we have added Mental Health and Wellbeing to our Training offering, which includes advice, free resources, downloads, training courses and signposting to helpful organisations.
DID YOU KNOW…
Mental ill health is responsible for 72 million working days lost a year, and costs £34.9 billion each year
828,000 workers suffering from work-related stress, depression or anxiety (new or long-standing) in 2019/20
1 in 5 people take a day off due to stress, yet 90% of these people cited a different reason for their absence
Presenteeism accounts for 2 times more losses than absences
A message from Faye, our Training Manager
Mental Health issues are a normal part of life, and it is important to remember that people can have good mental health or poor mental health at any given point. Within the UK the current statistics stipulate that one in four people are affected by a diagnosable mental health issue, and that by 2030 depression will be the single leading cause of illness.
Regardless of if your company has 5 staff, or 50 staff ,being able to spot the early signs of a mental health issues allows those experiencing distress to be supported.
Having attended the two day Mental Health First Aid at Work course I now feel comfortable and confident in being able to provide initial help, to prevent someone harming themselves, signpost to available local services and help to promote their recovery to good mental health.
Sadly there is still too much stigma associated with Mental Health issues and it is important for companies to take steps towards creating an environment where their staff are happy to discuss such issues without fear of how this will affect their working lives.
I believe that each of us has a responsibility to look after our own personal wellbeing as well as the mental health of others. The more mental health is discussed in the workplace the less discrimination will be experienced by those who suffer from these illnesses.
As one of the new Stallard Kane Mental Health First Aiders, all staff are welcome to discuss any topics with me, that will remain confidential, that fall under the remit of their Mental Health.
What are SKA doing to support staff wellbeing?
- Appointment of Mental Health First Aiders
- Wellbeing information being readily available in staff room
- Anonymous electronic way in which to contact the MH First Aider
- Signposting to available services
- Wellbeing breakfasts/lunches (even during a pandemic – conducted online via Zoom)
- Anonymous Wellbeing surveys
- Discounted gym memberships
- Employee Assistance Programme
DID YOU KNOW…
9% of employees who disclosed mental health issues to their line manager reported being disciplined, dismissed or demoted
Note: The percentage of people reporting discipline, dismissal or demotion in the Business in the Community report has reduced over the last three years: it was 15% in 2017, 11% in 2018 and 9% in 2019.
COMMIT TO WELLBEING IN THE WORKPLACE
- First of all, make sure that there is a clear commitment from the senior management team that the wellbeing of staff is important and ensure this is communicated to all staff
WORK OUT AN APPROACH
- Assess the mental health needs of your staff and ensure that all legal requirements are met
CREATE A POSITIVE CULTURE
- Promote healthy behaviour (e.g. supply fruit or other healthy snacks, exercise incentives)
- Conduct risk assessments to identify stress
- Organise social activities
- Ensure effective communication in the workplace
- Include health and mental health in performance reviews – this gives employees a platform to voice any concerns
- Train staff to recognise the signs of mental ill health
- Include a wellbeing strategy in staff inductions
- Discuss mental health issues freely
- Help employees to reduce the potential for stress
- Encourage work/life balance (e.g. flexible working)
- Provide confidential support or arrange/suggest external support
- Ensure there is a suitable Return to Work Policy in place (and possibly implement a phased return to work)
- Seek support through government incentives to ensure that those who experience mental ill health are able to return to work, and stay in their job
- Consult with your staff on wellbeing issues via surveys or one-to-ones
- Evaluate any systems put in place – ask yourself is it working? If not, what changes can be made/what new ideas can be brought to the table?
- Appoint a Mental Health Champion
- Appoint and train a Mental Health First Aider (our Training team can arrange this, if required)
- Review/write a Wellbeing Policy (our HR team can help with this, if required)
- CONNECT – connecting with others is a fundamental human need
• Talk instead of emailing
• Ask how someone’s weekend was, and listen to their answer
• Give a colleague a lift to work, or home
- BE ACTIVE – regular physical activity is linked to lower anxiety and depression
• Go for a walk on your lunchbreak
• Organise a work activity day
• Park further away from the office and walk
• Do desk exercises/stretching
- TAKE NOTICE – be present in the moment
• Clear the clutter
• Get a desktop plant (if company policy allows)
• Take a different route home
• Visit a new place for lunch
- KEEP LEARNING – this enhances self-esteem
• Learn a new word and use it
• Read a book/set up a book club
• Research something you have always been interested in
- GIVE BACK – people who help others are more likely to make themselves happier
• Create or get involved in a local community project
• Hold a charity fun day
CUT SICKNESS ABSENCE
- Over 70 million sick days are taken each year, due to mental health issues
- Employees force themselves into the workplace and underperform due to mental ill health
OPTIMISE STAFF PERFORMANCE
- A positive workplace approach to mental health can improve staff, and consequently, a company’s performance
IMPROVE STAFF MORALE
- People want to work for employers who support mental health and wellbeing
RETAIN STAFF/REDUCE STAFF TURNOVER
- People will look for alternative employment if they are stressed at work decrease the likelihood of grievances from unhappy staff
CREATE A HEALTHIER WORKPLACE
- On average, 7 days a year are taken off for health issues, with an estimated 40% due to mental health issues
ENSURE LEGAL COMPLIANCE
- The Equality Act 2020 states that an employer has a duty not to discriminate and must make reasonable adjustments in the workplace
It is important for a workplace to have a Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) action plan in place to assist with employees having a mental health crisis or developing mental health issues.
As with physical first aid which follows the ABC (airways, breathing, CPR) principle, mental health first aid has the ALGEE action plan set out below.
- Implement and communicate a Mental Health First Aid Action Plan in the workplace.
- Put in place Mental Health First Aiders (we know, from experience, that no matter how small your company is, it’s worth having more than one). Stallard Kane can arrange training for this (see all relevant training courses below).
DID YOU KNOW…
69% of UK line managers say that supporting employee wellbeing is a core skill, but only 13% have received mental health training. 35% of line managers reported a wish for basic training in common mental health conditions
There are a number of mental health and wellbeing courses available, the key one being the Mental Health First Aider course – we highly recommend training more than one person in your organisation, no matter how small you are. If you need help putting together a suitable mental health and wellbeing training programme, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our training team.
TWO DAY MENTAL HEALTH FIRST AIDER COURSE
This course gives delegates the skills to have a non-judgemental conversation, recognise the signs and symptoms of common mental health issues and effectively guide a person towards the right mental health support.
Delegates will gain an in depth understanding of mental health and the factors that can affect wellbeing, as well as practical skills to spot the triggers and signs of mental illness, and the confidence to step in, reassure and support a person in distress.
All delegates receive a mental health first aid manual and workbook to support their learning.
Please be aware that this course focuses on employees in the workplace and covers subjects that some people may find distressing, including suicide and self-harm. If an attendee feels
overwhelmed they can leave the course at any time.
The topics covered are:
- Action planning for using MHFA
- Alcohol, drugs and anxiety disorders
- Alcohol, drugs and mental health
- Alcohol, drugs and psychosis
- Bipolar disorder
- Cognitive distortions and cognitive behavioural therapy
- Crisis first aid for acute psychosis
- Crisis first aid after a traumatic event
- Depression in the workplace
- Eating disorders
- First aid for anxiety disorders
- First aid for depression
- First aid to assist a suicidal crisis
- Impact of mental health issues
- Non-judgemental listening skills
- Personality disorders
- Recovery and building resources
- Risk factors for depression
- Risk factors for psychosis
- Stigma and discrimination
- Suicide figures
- Symptoms of depression
- The Mental Health First Aid action plan
- Treatment and resources for anxiety disorders
- Treatment and resources for depression
- Treatment and resources for psychosis
- Warning signs of developing psychosis
- What is an anxiety disorder?
- What is depression?
- What is mental health?
- What is psychosis?
- Why Mental Health First Aid?
HALF DAY COVID MENTAL HEALTH TRAINING COURSE
How are your employees being affected by Covid, whether they’re still working on site, from home or on furlough?
Now is the right time to incorporate mental health and wellbeing discussions in to your Health and Safety and HR conversations, and this courses enables you to introduce a Wellness Action Plan to support your people wherever they’re working.
VIRTUAL COLLEGE ONLINE COURSES
Our affilliate, Virtual College, offers a wide variety of mental health courses, some of which we’ve included brief descriptions of below. To find out more about any of these courses, please visit the Virtual College site using our link.
Personal and professional development package: This includes all of the following courses (these are all available as individual courses too):
- Confidence building techniques
- Dealing with stressful situations
- Digital literacy
- Emotional intelligence
- Giving and receiving feedback
- Growth mindset
- Influencing, negotiating and networking
- Maximising learning opportunities at work
- Neuroscience for personal development
- Personal development and self-awareness
- Personal brand
- Presentation skills
- Reflective techniques
- Time management
Mental Health Awareness: This course covers the different aspects of your life and how you can improve your mental health and wellbeing in those areas. Aimed at anyone who wishes to improve their mental health and wellbeing, the course takes around one hour to complete.
Supporting your staff through mental health: This course provides information about mental health and wellbeing for employers and managers. It is aimed at business owners and managers in a variety of settings who want to better understand and support people with mental health problems.
Mental Health & Wellbeing: Mental health and well-being are extremely important topics for both employers and employees to consider and actively encourage. However it can be difficult to know where to start when it comes to implementing strategies.
Supporting your team’s health and wellbeing remotely: Filled with lots of guidance and practical tips, our short course has been designed to help managers support the health and wellbeing of their remote team.
There are several other courses available that could help those working vulnerable adults, including Self Neglect, Self Harm and Suicidal Thoughts.
Employee Wellbeing – an introduction
Mental Health Reasonable Adjustments
Mental Health – Tailored Adjustment Agreement
Mental Health – WRAP
Mental Health – Stress and Anxiety
Mental Health – Stress Bucket
Mental Health – Medical Questionnaire
Sample Wellbeing Policy
There are many organisations who can provide additional support to you and your employees, and lots of free resources available on the internet. We have listed a few of the key links below:
The Samaritans work to make sure fewer people die by suicide. Every seven seconds, they respond to a call for help with no judgement and no pressure – they’re there for anyone who needs someone. They can be contacted 24 hours a day, 365 days a year on 116 123 or visit their website to found out more: www.samaritans.org
MIND empowers people to understand their mental health condition and the choices available to them through the following:
- Infoline, 0300 123 3393, which offers callers confidential help for the price of a local call
- Legal Line, 0300 466 6463, which provides information on mental health related law to the public, service users, family members/carers, mental health professionals and mental health advocates
- Our award-winning publications and website: www.mind.org.uk
RETHINK MENTAL ILLNESS
Rethink Mental Illness improves the lives of people severely affected by mental illness through their network of local groups and services, expert information and successful campaigning. Their goal is to make sure everyone affected by severe mental illness has a good quality of life.
The Rethink Mental Illness Advice Service offers practical help on issues such as the Mental Health Act, community care and welfare benefits, living with mental illness, medication and care. It is open from 9:30am – 4.00pm, Monday to Friday. Visit www.rethink.org to find out more.
ACCESS TO WORK MENTAL HEALTH SUPPORT SERVICE
This confidential service delivered by Remploy funded by the Department for Work and Pensions is available at no charge to any employees with depression, anxiety, stress or other mental health issues affecting their work.
Their specialist advisers provide:
- Tailored work-focused mental health support for nine months
- Suitable coping strategies
- A support plan to keep them in, or return to work
- Ideas for workplace adjustments to help them fulfil their role
- Practical advice to support those with a mental health condition
So far, they have supported over 12,000 people across Britain, with a 93 per cent success rate of people retaining their employment after six months.
Public Health England has produced a wide range of useful app, which are free to use and download, including:
- Calm Harm – An app designed to help people resist or manage the urge to self-harm. It’s private and password protected
- Catch It – Learn to look at problems differently, turn negative thoughts into positive ones and improve your mental wellbeing
- Cove – Create music to help express complex feelings. Cove is a personal musical journal to help you with your mental health
- My Possible Self – Pick from 10 modules to learn how to manage fear, anxiety and stress, and take control of your thoughts, feelings and behaviour
- eQuoo: Emotional Fitness Game – Use adventure games designed by psychologists to increase your emotional fitness and learn new psychological skills
- Feeling Good – Improve your thoughts, feelings, self-esteem and self-confidence using the principles of cognitive behavioural therapy
- Stress & Anxiety Companion – Guided breathing exercises, relaxing music and games made to help calm the mind, and handle stress and anxiety on the go.
Find out more at: www.nhs.uk/oneyou/apps/