- Is your workplace a pleasant environment to work in?
- Do you think that you would be supported if you were struggling with problems inside and outside of work?
- Does your workplace show appreciation for their employees? How?
The effect of poor mental health on work
Getting on with the day-to-day things when you’re feeling heightened anxiety, low mood or have been diagnosed with depression (it is a medical diagnosis) can feel a lot more difficult than usual.
Mustering the drive to get out of bed, feeling prepared enough to step outside the front door, and going through the regular tasks can feel like more of a challenge than usual.
When we are on a low ebb we generally feel less resilient and this affects how we interpret events in the world around us.
According to the Mind workplace survey, when someone is suffering poor mental health it can affect their work in the following ways:
- Finding it difficult to concentrate
- Being less patient with the people around them such as customers, clients and colleagues
- More likely to get into conflict with others
- Feeling distracted
- Having difficulty learning new tasks
- Challenging or unfamiliar tasks are put off until another time
- Feeling uncertain and having difficulty making decisions
- The standard of work can drop and it can take longer to complete
- It becomes difficult to juggle a number of tasks because you already have so much else going on to process
What the research says
We are in an economic climate where for at least a decade there is been a drive to “do more with less”. Staff are an organisation’s biggest, most valuable resource.
Dr. Christina Maslach Phd* has researched the area staff morale and come up with a list of key factors that affect the morale of workers.
These key factors are:
- Resource, including staff – are there enough people to do the work properly and well?
- Control and autonomy – our staff trusted to be able to do the tasks or are they micromanaged?
- Rewards and recognition – how to staff get to know when a job has been done well?
- Community – having support from your team and other colleagues, whether you are working face-to-face or remotely
- Fairness of treatment and respect – is there exclusion, favouritism or nepotism present in the work environment?
- Values and the meaning of the contribution to the work – do the staff understand the point of what they’re doing and the effort they are putting into it?
Who is responsible for employee well-being?
Employee well-being tends to be shared responsibility.
When doing a Personal Review with a manager, these days well-being is much more on the agenda. A good manager will want to support you. New managers don’t always know how to support a direct report.
It is often helpful to familiarise yourself with the policies and procedures of the place where you work. From that, you can have an indication of what the employer has available to support an employee in their well-being.
As an employee it is often helpful for you to identify some of the ways that you intend to support yourself as well, so that both parties can meet part-way. It also helps to show that you’ve put some consideration into the topic before it is discussed.
National Employee Appreciation day
National Employee Appreciation day takes place in the USA and in Canada during March, usually on the first Friday of March. It can serve as a reminder to support and show appreciation for your colleagues and staff and also to consider any help that you may need.
Article written by Emma Ross.
Emma is a CCHA tenant. She has worked as a counsellor for Mind for 7 years, and has also worked in GP surgeries for the Cardiff & Vale NHS in Ely and on an Employee Assistance Program. You can find her on social media @WorkSmartLiveHappy
Disclaimer: All opinions and thoughts are solely the author’s, and do not reflect the opinions and beliefs of the website or its affiliates.