Well-being at Work

Wow, there’s a lot of good stuff going on this week! Leeds Well-being Week, International Day of Happiness, the first day of Spring, it’s all going on in the world of mental health. And there’s nothing better for perking up your mood than the sight of a gorgeous Spring flower pushing through!

Last year it was reported that 60% of employees in the UK experienced a mental health problem due to work. The figure for 2016 was 62%. This shows us that some progress has been seen with regards to health & well-being, and employers are becoming more aware of the need to offer more support at work, but there is still a very long way to go!

We are all stressed in some form or another. It’s not just the victims of mental health that experience stress, it’s the loved ones who are around these people too. So if you think about it, all of us have experienced a form of stress at some point in our lives.

We all know that a little bit of stress can be good for us – some people thrive off it and won’t work any other way. It keeps us on our toes and can make us perform better – and it’s good to come out of your comfort zone if you want to develop yourself in your career. But too much, or too regular stress, can have a huge negative impact on our body and mind and can result in anxiety and depression – something we don’t want to see!

We work with a lot of temps and younger candidates – did you know there are 40,000 people in the Leeds City Region who are on a zero hours contract? Temps are more likely to be young – aged 18 to 24 to be precise. And sadly younger and temporary employees are more likely to have mental health issues, with 37% of those aged 18 to 29 having been formally diagnosed with a mental health condition in 2017. It’s no wonder really – temp workers tend to work longer hours, travel further to work, earn less money and have poor job security.

So what are we doing to support our temps? We are appointing health champions in our office who will be attending some mental health first aider training to help them develop awareness, confidence and capability in managing mental health. If we think we can see somebody suffering we will be able to act upon it. We will be here to support our temps and to listen if they want to talk. And it’s important to listen….it’s such a powerful tool. We won’t be pushy and we won’t delve into people’s private lives, but if they want to talk we will be here.

Workplace mental health is not just about improving productivity and making a business more competitive – it’s about a duty of care to ensure our employees are safe and well at work. I see many businesses and managers who lack training and support in mental health and this is why we are doing something now to tackle this issue. If you want to find out more about our Mental Health First Aider courses, just send me a message! Are you thinking about the well-being of your staff this year, and more importantly your temps or younger colleagues?