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New Acas guidance on mental health in the workplace

New guidance referenced here from ACAS on how to provide support rather than stigma to employees in the workplace. This summary by law firm Lewis Silkin covers the essentials – how employers can provide an environment in which employees are more likely to disclose their condition and get support from their managers. The incentives are not just limited to good ethical behaviour. As covered at the top of the article, mental health costs employers around £30 billion in lost productivity, absence, increased grievance, complaints & litigation and having less satisfied employees.… Read more New Acas guidance on mental health in the workplace

Thrive in the City – Programme of Events, 27 November 2017

If you are somewhere on this map on 27 November then you can join up to 400 people already registered to attend one or more of an amazing programme of events to support the mental health of millions of workers in the City of London. Choose one event or fill your whole day. Relevant to everyone who has mental health (or ‘everyone’ for short) this event has something for you all: tools to help you look after your own resilience, guidance for your role as a manager or leader so… Read more Thrive in the City – Programme of Events, 27 November 2017

Thoughts please – how to generate leadership interest in supporting workplace mental health???

I’ve run into a problem for which I don’t have a solution, so I’m reaching out to my network to ask for your views. I’d really appreciate your thoughts on this knotty problem. The problem is this: how do we motivate those in control of our workplaces, universities and schools to wanting to improve mental health outcomes in their organisations? There are numerous obvious benefits: There’s the moral case – which I don’t need to articulate in depth. Supporting people in need, and removing the stigma that widely exists, is… Read more Thoughts please – how to generate leadership interest in supporting workplace mental health???

Mental health – the Thriving at Work Report – It’s like shooting fish in a barrel

Today saw the publication of the Thriving at Work Report.  I’ve seen so many quotes today about how outstandingly rubbish employers are at supporting mental health in the workplace, that I didn’t know where to start. It’s been like shooting a fish in a barrel. Let’s start with Paul Farmer, chief executive of Mind, quoted as saying: “Opportunities are missed to prevent poor mental health and ensure that employees who may be struggling get the support they need. In many instances, employers simply don’t understand the crucial role they can play,… Read more Mental health – the Thriving at Work Report – It’s like shooting fish in a barrel

Just in case any HR Directors missed this article . . . 

Here’s the article: https://www.thehrdirector.com/business-news/mental-health/mental-health-silent-menace/ As I say in my speech (“Mentally Healthy Conversations”): “Organistions need to understand this: people with mental health challenges – we don’t need support because we are weak, we need support because we want to be strong, we want to perform and be effective.  So this is win-win; those who give support, get productivity, loyalty, less grievance, less absence, less complaints and less litigation, and more satisfied staff or students.” So, HR Directors, please create the environment in which those who need support, get support. You… Read more Just in case any HR Directors missed this article . . . 

Achieving Resilience

The tree in the picture at the top of this article sits at the far end of Tarn Hows in the Lake District. It’s an impressive display of resilience. Practically horizontal from the constant battering of a singularly-directioned prevailing wind.  It is twisted, bent and strained – sinewed in its features, as if expressing the pain of the effort to remain, just, upstanding.  It looks like it’s on the verge of breaking. Yet on the other hand it shows a strength that speaks resilience in volumes. This tree has stood… Read more Achieving Resilience

A tough week ahead

This year World Mental Health Day not only coincides with Baby Loss Awareness Week but also coincides with the anniversary of the death of our son. He would have been seven this week, if he hadn’t been stillborn. It’s going to be a tough week. That bereavement started my journey through Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and, at its worst, depression. It has been a difficult journey. But it has also been a journey that opened my eyes to the extraordinary struggle, stigma and lack of support that many people experience in… Read more A tough week ahead

Mental Wellness: Useful Lessons from the Workplace for Full-time Education

Here’s a quote taken from a motivational speech I frequently give in order to inspire improvements in the way mental wellness is handled in the workplace. “Employers need to understand this. Those with mental wellness challenges; we don’t need support because we are weak, we need support because we want to be strong, we want to perform and be effective in the workplace.  Yet in the playground of the workplace differences are identified as weaknesses.  In the playground of the workplace differences are ignored rather than supported. And in the… Read more Mental Wellness: Useful Lessons from the Workplace for Full-time Education

What is neurodiversity

As a concept neurodiversity is in its infancy.  So, naturally, it may require some explanation. First and foremost, it is a concept relating to diversity; just like racial diversity, sexual diversity and religious diversity. It suggests that those with neurological differences should be treated equally and should not be discriminated against because they have different personalities or because their brains are differently wired.  Indeed, that sense of equality is why our organisation is called “Evenhood”. And just like diversity concepts relating to race, sexuality and religion, it applies in any… Read more What is neurodiversity

A tough week ahead

This marks a difficult week in my calendar.  First, it is the anniversary of the death of the first child that my wife and I were expecting.  Theo would have been seven this week; but he was stillborn, just a little short of his due date.  His death marked the start of my journey into mental health challenges. Appropriately, this week marks World Mental Health Day as well as Baby Loss Awareness Week. This coincidence of events makes for a tough time for me over the coming days. Much as I would be happy… Read more A tough week ahead

Mental health is your business

One in three sick notes are for mental health making it the biggest cause of workplace absence, ahead of musculoskeletal issues. What is staggering about this is that whenever I ask someone whether their employer would help with a musculoskeletal problem the answer I get is positive, long and detailed – with employers having a wellbeing policy that covers the issue, provides the ability to offer new chairs, desks, ergonomic keyboards and computer screen arms. Some have physios and workplace gyms etc etc. When I ask whether their employer would… Read more Mental health is your business

We need a mental health league table for universities

Here’s an interesting article from The Independent suggesting that Universities need to do more to support students who suffer or might come to suffer mental health challenges. I agree.  My work is focused on workplace mental health. And I have often commented on how surprised I am at how frequently post-graduates in the early years of their working life seek my support.  The social, educational, financial and professional pressure on our younger generation is immense and I agree whole-heartedly that greater effort needs to be made to support those who face mental… Read more We need a mental health league table for universities

Guess what percentage of employees with mental health challenges have suffered bias from their employers.

More shocking statistics in this article with a further indictment on how employees with disabilities and / or mental health challenges experience bias and lack of support in the workplace. Signing a pledge and having a Committee meeting is not enough. Solving this is win-win. Those few employers who have been active in this area see reduced grievance, reduced absence, increased productivity, a more engaged workforce and more. Those many employees with mental health challenges see increased satisfaction at work and reduced symptoms. Go to evenhood.org for free resources to get… Read more Guess what percentage of employees with mental health challenges have suffered bias from their employers.

Workplace mental wellness – all it takes is a conversation

Workplace mental wellness is beginning to hit the diversity and inclusion agenda.  Don’t let your organisation get left behind. Read more from the Heads Together campaign, promoted by the Duke & Duchess of Cambridge, along with Prince Harry. http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/celebrities-join-kate-middleton-prince-william-prince-harry-support-heads-together-campaign-1614585 And see how Evenhood can help your organisation https://evenhood.org/motivational-speaking-engagements/

The greatest organisational failure of the present time needs a solution. We’re looking to your diversity and inclusion specialists to help sort this one out.

“Ninety eight per cent of business leaders surveyed said good mental health is important to the performance of their organisation. However, just 14 per cent have a formal mental health policy in place and fewer than one in five offer line management training.” Half of UK workplaces report mental health problems, according to a survey by the Institute of Directors (IoD) | City A.M. http://www.cityam.com/260113/half-uk-workplaces-report-mental-health-problems-according

British millennials ‘have second worst mental wellbeing in world’ #mentalhealthatwork #mentalhealth #workplacementalhealth

The workplace is currently generally ill-equipped to support the mental wellbeing of employees and needs to catch up with the progress made in other areas of equality. See more at Evenhood… Read more British millennials ‘have second worst mental wellbeing in world’ #mentalhealthatwork #mentalhealth #workplacementalhealth

Mental Health In The Workplace

Employers lose more days to mental health than to musculoskeletal problems. There are a number of initiatives employers can take for less than the cost of an ergonomic workstation. See more at Evenhood.org “I think we are reaching a tipping point. In five years’ time, as an employer, if you’re not seen as having a much more open culture around mental health, you’ll be seen as being totally out of touch.” https://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/sep/10/mental-health-workplace-employers #workplacementalhealth #mentalhealth #mentalhealthatwork #reasonableadjustments

It’s your workplace. They’re your employees. Mental Health IS Your Business.

Read ahead and learn how to save 30% of lost productivity and staff costs by supporting your employees with their mental wellness challenges. Find more free resources to support your organisation’s mental wellness strategy on evenhood.org Mental health: the costs to employees and businesses – SHP Online http://www.shponline.co.uk/49297-2/ #workplacementalhealth #mentalhealth #mentalhealthatwork #reasonableadjustments

If you have a colleague or team member who has depression and if you don’t know the difference between depression and sadness, then read this. You could help change someone’s life for the better by understanding that depression is an utterly debilitating illness.

Why Don’t Men Talk About Depression? | Men’s Health https://www.google.co.uk/amp/www.menshealth.com/health/what-depression-is-like-for-men%3Famp?client=safari #workplacementalhealth #mentalhealth #mentalhealthatwork #reasonableadjustments

A lot of people ask me what PTSD is and what its impact on me is. 

The article linked below is spot on. So if you know anyone from your workplace who has experienced stillbirth, child bereavement or has PTSD, read this. Your willingness to understand them might be the catalyst to removing the stigma and supporting them to remain resilient and effective in the workplace. Maintaining resilience and effectiveness in the workplace while suffering from PTSD was quite a challenge for me and opened my eyes to the struggle that people have in the workplace when they have a mental wellness challenge. This is what… Read more A lot of people ask me what PTSD is and what its impact on me is. 

Mental Health IS Your Business

93% cite supportive line management as most important in aiding mental health and wellbeing at work “Employees are clear that rather than paid-for interventions . . . a supportive work culture and the right office environment will do far more to support their mental health and boost their wellbeing” https://www.employeebenefits.co.uk/issues/january-online-2017/31-believe-their-employer-does-enough-to-support-mental-health-and-wellbeing/ #workplacementalhealth #mentalhealth #mentalhealthatwork #reasonableadjustments

Here’s a great initiative for employers to help their staff start the conversation on mental health.

Mental health issues result in more work days lost than musculoskeletal problems. Yet this sort of initiative costs less than an ergonomic workstation. Mental health event tackles resilience in the workplace – Manchester Evening News http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/business/business-news/mental-health-event-tackles-resilience-12468609 #workplacementalhealth #mentalhealth #mentalhealthatwork #reasonableadjustments

A tough week ahead – Stillbirth anniversary coincides with Baby Loss Awareness Week and World Mental Health Day

This year World Mental Health Day not only coincides with Baby Loss Awareness Week but also coincides with the anniversary of the death of our son. He would have been six in… Read more A tough week ahead – Stillbirth anniversary coincides with Baby Loss Awareness Week and World Mental Health Day

For millions with mental health problems, the modern workplace is an insult to body and soul

http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/economy/2016/09/millions-mental-health-problems-modern-workplace-insult-body-and-soul Here’s a fascinating story which explores the presumption that employees with mental health challenges have a personal weakness – and it’s their fault. Not only is that presumption challenged… Read more For millions with mental health problems, the modern workplace is an insult to body and soul

Workplace Depression Across Eight Countries Said to Cost $246 Billion | PTCommunity

https://ptcommunity.com/news/2016-09-27-000000/workplace-depression-across-eight-countries-said-cost-246-billion The costs of depression are shocking. As is the fact that employees struggle into work while hiding their depression or go absent declaring other illnesses to hide their depression. Employees don’t limp to work with a broken leg. Let’s change it so they don’t have to limp through work with mental health challenges. Dr. Evans-Lacko says. “Interventions which support employees with depression need to be developed, adapted, implemented and evaluated across all countries to mitigate the high costs of workplace depression.”

Take 10 Together | Starting the Conversation | World Mental Health Day

http://www.wearethecity.com/take-10-together-starting-conversation/ Support Mental Health First Aid England as it asks organisations to consider what they can do to better support employees who experience mental health challenges. MHFA England is calling… Read more Take 10 Together | Starting the Conversation | World Mental Health Day

Majority of British workers have suffered mental health issues ‘in silence’, report claims | The Independent

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/mental-health-uk-workers-employees-workplace-manager-boss-stress-anxiety-depression-a7343031.html Organisations haven’t got workplace mental health right yet.  Here, The Independent covers the absence of support for line managers through both training & organisational culture to help them work more effectively with staff when they are experiencing a mental health challenge. Evenhood promotes workplace mental wellness strategies to help organisations get it right.  We provide eight steps for organisations to get it right – all for free, embedded on the evenhood.org website.  Step 6 is all about building a mental wellness strategy. Let’s get it right. “80 per cent… Read more Majority of British workers have suffered mental health issues ‘in silence’, report claims | The Independent

Find your strengths

“Every impressive individual has their achilles heel. And every achilles heel has an impressive individual. If your achilles heel is always on display; what can you do to instead shift the attention to your impressive abilities?” This article is all about encouraging you to change the language that you apply to yourself and your condition in the workplace. It’s about you finding the strengths that come with your condition and playing to those strengths. The prevailing language is negative and treatment based. Treatment is important and in many cases vital.… Read more Find your strengths

Umpteen traits of a great leader

  Diversity isn’t just a modern-day, right-on desirable. It’s a good old-fashioned essential leadership quality for success . . . when great leaders find it within themselves to tap into the pool of talent that lies within the field of the neurodiverse, the workplace will reap the benefits of the full range of human talent. Watch a Ted talk on leadership, read a leadership article, go on a leadership course – at some point you will be given the top 7 or so traits of a successful leader.  I lap… Read more Umpteen traits of a great leader

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