Poor mental health costs UK employers up to £45 billion a year (analysis published by Deloitte 2019/20).
These were levels reported before the recent pandemic impact and before a job market with heightened skills shortages affecting organisations’ abilities to recruit the right people with the right skills.
So, what can employers do to retain and help their teams to be healthy? What can managers do to ensure that the workplace is a positive environment, which promotes good mental health?
More and more successful employers know that they need their teams and individual employees, to feel comfortable to be honest about their wellbeing and to feel able to access the support they need. And they recognise the value of investing in managers, enabling them to feel confident to actively initiate and participate in conversations about mental health and prioritise it in the workplace.
Whilst there are many courses for managers to attend, they tend to offer short term solutions or focus on a chosen few people within an organisation trying to help everyone – however well meaning, this can promote stress amongst the chosen few. Our Workplace Wellbeing and Culture Programme goes a step further.
To drive culture change in an organisation, leadership teams and managers need insight, training, and support on mental health, and this needs to be fully embraced from the top as a long-term endeavour. Only with this, will true environmental change be created where everyone is encouraged and able to look after themselves and each other, which, in turn will result in better levels of productivity and health.
How much more could be achieved if your leadership team and managers understood what specific changes could improve mental health in your organisation?
Our Workplace Wellbeing Culture Programme focuses on understanding your employees and supporting your leadership team to implement strategies which support wellbeing and will:
- Increase productivity and performance
- Reduce sickness and increase attendance
- Increase staff retention
- Make you an exemplar employer, able to attract the best employees
- Increase customer, user or patient satisfaction
- Dispel the stigma about mental health and shift culture change around wellbeing
- Improve managers’ confidence about dealing with mental health
At the heart of our programme is an established emotional needs audit (ENA). We have measured the results of over 10,000 people in the last 2 years in a confidential way, to help us understand the ever-changing emotional needs of a variety of professional sectors and the general population. Unlike other wellbeing surveys that simply tell you the incidence of mental ill health, our audit looks at specific needs that are not being met and the barriers to getting emotional needs met (giving you the why), enabling managers to target and focus support to make a difference.
Just think how powerful that information would be to your managers.
How does the programme work?
Suffolk mind uses an approach called emotional needs and resources, an idea that we all have physical and emotional needs and a set of skills and resources that we’re born with to meet those needs. This is referred to as the Emotional Needs & Resources Model.
Step 1: Communication & Engagement
- We will provide you with physical and digital resources to communicate to your employees what the programme is about, what it aims to achieve. Customisable posters, digital resources that can be dual branded and blogs to share amongst your teams.
- An organisation wide bespoke presentation, introducing the model to all your teams that can be pre-recorded to be more widely distributed. Introducing a common language of emotional needs and resources – for all to have an awareness.
- An emotional needs audit example with a link to a web page that you will design with us. Explanation emails for you to customise that explain the survey process, confidentiality, and analysis.
- After the first audit cycle we will provide resources that enable you to share the results and to communicate the implementation plan.
Step 2: The Emotional Needs Audit
- We will work with your HR and SLT team to establish the numbers of individual groups that need to be analysed. Including any particular additional questions or areas that you are interested in. E.g., are those who have worked for the organisation the longest experiencing better mental health and crucially why?
- We create a final confidential survey online link for you and your colleagues to complete.
- We will ensure that there are appropriate links to support for those that need it – agreed with you -so that they reflect what support could be available from your organisation.
Step 3: Results and Creating a Wellbeing Performance Culture Session
- The results will be analysed by our Research and Insight Team and a pack of information will be produced that will include analysis on how well your organisation as a whole (and any individual groups) is meeting it’s emotional needs, and what in the working environment is helping and what’s a barrier.
- A three hour session, including a presentation of your organisation’s Emotional Needs Audit results will be facilitated by our research and insight team and one of our qualified emotional needs trainer/psychologist. This session for senior managers will contain learning modules to develop the leadership team’s understanding of what emotionally healthy and high performing organisations look like.
- You will come away from the session with a clear action plan so that you can build on the positive contributions you are already making and address areas which need improvement. It will contain measures that support staff wellbeing and address issues raised following the audit of employees.
Step 4: Implementation
- Following the Creating a Wellbeing Performance Culture workshop, there will be a period of 4-10 months, depending on the size and complexity of your organisation, for you to implement the actions and for change to start to happen before the next Emotional Needs Audit with your employees.
- You will have a monthly one hour check in available, with your emotional needs and resources trainer, to assess how your implementation phase is working. To share outputs and outcomes and to discuss any areas of difficulty.
Cycles 2, 3 and 4
These follow the same process, following on from the implementation of the previous cycle and continuing to build upon the results and actions.
We will continue working with you for a minimum of four cycles; during this time, we will learn more about your areas of focus, how we can best collect the data, present and work with the results to target them as effectively as possible.
We know that cultural change takes time, and that following these four cycles, your management and leadership team will be well trained and experienced in how to achieve this in your organisational context. We can work with you to embed this programme structure into your organisation and we will provide you with a range of tools and resources so that you can continue embedding the culture and practice.
In total we work with you over a period of 4 x 6-12 month cycles to really embed your learning, to not only make real change but to capture and report on the outcomes of change too.