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5 min read

Maintaining Employee Wellbeing With Designated Mental Health Days

Today’s way of working has emerged into an all too often fast paced, busy and noisy environment which is surrounded by many forms of technological advancements.
Written by
Joanna Clare
Content Manager
Published on
June 24, 2024

Today’s way of working has emerged into an all too often fast paced, busy and noisy environment which is surrounded by many forms of technological advancements. Of course, these are, on the whole, imperative to be able to work productively and to maximum efficiency. However, with this acceleration in the way people work, there has also been an increase in stress related illnesses. As demands and pressures mount, it is crucial for employers to recognise the significance of mental health days and how it helps to create a workplace that places emphasis on the wellbeing of its employees.

Mental health days provide a dedicated opportunity for employees to prioritise their mental health which helps to reduce stress, keep burnout at bay and enhance overall resilience. It is also important for employers and employees alike to be able to acknowledge that everyone, regardless of their job title, gender, age or personal circumstances can at any time face various challenges which can be of both a personal or professional nature. Employers who choose to embrace mental health days off, are demonstrating a real commitment to supporting their staff beyond the ordinary day to day work concerns.

To implement mental health days off, employers must firstly consider certain key factors.It is imperative for the staff to de-stigmatise mental health discussions, some of which may be uncomfortable but necessary. Open communications can channel an environment where employees feel comfortable expressing their needs and feelings within the working environment. Team leaders and management play a key role by encouraging transparency and promoting the importance of self care and by offering a continuous support system.

Policies concerning mental health days should clearly define the process required in order to request days off and there must be clear guidelines to assist employees to feel empowered to take time off without feeling that they are letting anyone down or fear repercussions. This could involve specific procedures to undertake, improved communication channels or as some organisations already do, incorporate mental health days into existing leave.

Education is another essential component with regards to mental wellbeing in a workplace. Resources that are specifically designed to educate employees and employers should be provided as well as various workshops, seminars or online information, guidance and support. These can all contribute towards creating a supportive workplace where wellbeing is a priority.

Of course, not everyone can plan when mental health days may need to be taken, so employers should plan and implement workload management strategies which prevents any disruption to the team dynamics. This ensures a smooth and problem free transition during an employee's absence.

Any decision to implement mental health days in any organisation is a strategic investment by an employer into the wellbeing of its workforce. By creating a supportive culture that promotes open dialogue and trust and by providing powerful and effective tools for employees to prioritise their mental health, employers form a far more resilient, healthy and productive workforce.

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