Managers, stimulate mental health

“Just because no-one else can heal or do your inner work for you does not mean you can, should, or need to do it alone” (Lisa Olivera)

Managers should spot signs of depreciating employee mental health and follow up with mental health conversations. Declining mental health impacts focus and energy negatively — and ultimately productivity suffers. Spotting these signs of decline, however, are not easy as some members of the team may be laughing and seemingly happy, but anxiety and depression may be lurking beneath the façade. Regular check-ins by managers at least provide some opportunities for employees to open up about their wellbeing, but many will be hesitant to share their feelings within a large group.

The Adecco Group, a Swiss/French company based in Zurich and the second-largest human resources provider in the world, notes: “53% of managers say that they have not found it easy to identify when staff may be struggling with mental wellbeing.” Professor Ina J C Rothmann, Workwell Research Unit at North-West University in South Africa, suggests five stages of mental health, as depicted in the following table developed by Free To Grow:

The human being doesn’t remain in a particular mental state and, depending on circumstances, relationship quality, support, etc., can move up or down the spectrum. The point here is that the human being can be influenced towards achieving a better mental health status. This provides an opportunity for managers to become involved in caring conversations with and support of team members.

Alinda Nortje, Founder and Executive Chairperson of Free To Grow, helpfully notes four components of effective wellbeing conversations, viz.:

Managers should stimulate mental health and employee wellbeing intentionally. Where an employee is in crisis, managers can refer the employee to a mental health professional. Mental health issues should not be career-limiting — they are challenges that so many are facing currently.

Free To Grow assists companies with boosting mental health through meaningful programmes that provide tools to encourage growth. Staying Strong, one such programme, offers profound value and serves as a platform to encourage employee wellbeing. For more information, contact me on jonathan@ftgsa.co.za

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Originally published at https://www.stretchforgrowth.com on December 11, 2022.

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Jonathan has spent over 30 years focusing his efforts on developing people throughout the world. He believes that people have the most impact when stretched.

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Jonathan Mills

Jonathan has spent over 30 years focusing his efforts on developing people throughout the world. He believes that people have the most impact when stretched.