The effects of mental health in the workplace can be dramatic. Someone who is valued, feels confident in their role, and has close workplace connections, will enjoy positive mental health. This translates to all areas of work and home life.
Alternatively, someone isolated in the workplace, with little confidence or connections will suffer from poor mental health.
By law employers have a duty of care towards their employees, which covers physical and mental wellbeing. Identifying psychosocial hazards that can lead to poor mental health is an essential practice.
Safe Work Australia has identified eight known psychosocial hazards in the workplace, they are:
Poor mental health in the workplace has serious consequences for the health of your employees and the health of your company.
When anxiety and stress levels are high for extended periods of time, it will inevitably result in health issues for staff which can lead to decreases in productivity and disrupt day-to-day productivity as well as family issues.
Workplaces that suffer from high levels of workplace stress and poor mental health will see a dramatic rise in absenteeism, sick leave, staff turnover, early retirement and a general drop in work quality and commitment.
A company that does not look after its staff, cannot rely on its staff to look after the company.
The benefits of maintaining a workplace that places value on the mental health of its employees are staggering.
According to the Productivity Commission Inquiry into Mental Health in April 2019, for every $1 spent there is a $2.30 return. According to the report ‘The study also found that, on average, when a 33 per cent reduction in presenteeism, absenteeism and workers compensation claims is achieved, this translates to:
Healthy workplaces strive to bring out the best in all of its staff. By emphasising the development of sound mental health practices, a company can expect to attract and keep top talent, develop engaged and loyal staff, and promote increased mental health awareness throughout society.
Companies will also enjoy lower absenteeism, higher productivity, higher quality of work and a more supportive environment.
Research has also shown that companies who invest in mental health can expect to see an ROI of up to 400%.
The first steps in increasing the mental health within a workplace is to acknowledge its importance and accepting that mental health is a reality of life.
Companies can develop mental health practices through a few relatively easy steps.
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