The importance of speaking about mental health at work

The importance of speaking about mental health at work

Check out our video made in partnership with CABA on navigating mental ill health at work, how to create an environment which promotes wellbeing, and why it is so vital to have these conversations

The importance of speaking about mental health at work

Mental wellbeing specialist Kirsty Lilley has been working with CABA for just over 12 months. She helped Accountancy Age put together this video, sharing some insights from CABA, which offers support, information and resources for members of the ICAEW community to enable individuals to promote their own wellbeing.

After a yougov survey found that 74% of adults felt so stressed last year that they were unable to cope, it is clear that the subject needs to be addressed in the workplace.

But what kind of fears do employees have about how they will be perceived or treated if they disclose mental health issues?

“Employees often have the fear that when they disclose mental health difficulties, that it will attack their credibility or their professional standing in the workplace or the organisation,” Kirsty said.

She said that organisations still need to do some work on how they view mental health issues.

“We really need to move away from this discussion about ‘What’s wrong with you?’ to asking people: ‘what’s happened to you?’”

This would help position that individual’s distress as a normal, if painful response to something that has happened to them.

And she said that one way to achieve this is to go beyond awareness campaigns or isolated mental health training programmes towards a strategic approach towards mental health, managing wellbeing alongside performance.

One of the issues which tends to cause difficulties for people in the work environment is conflict. Kirsty Lilley said that while conflict is a normal part of human interaction, it can often be mismanaged in the workplace, and she shares some tips for how best to deal with it.

In our video, she also discusses the importance of a compassionate response towards any employees experiencing mental ill health, and how employers can create a culture which promotes wellbeing in the workplace.

  • Anyone who is looking for more information should visit the CABA website at cabamentalwellbeing.org.uk, where they can find a whole range of expert-led resources on mental health.

 

 

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