The responsibility of being a leader. How can you support your team's mental health?
Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices.
Listen to Tom Oxley, a workplace mental health strategist, share his insights from the journey of supporting workplaces and leaders in bringing the topic of mental health to organizations.
Some more recent statistics about the alarming trends in workplaces concerning mental health:
65% of employees believe that leaders don't care about their well-being.
Although 63% of workers believe their workplace is unhelpful, 72% of employees want their companies to support mental health.
9 out of 10 workers worry about their level of burnout.
Concerns about their stress levels over the past year were expressed by 88.1% of workers.
Only 36% of workers are enthusiastic about their jobs and workplace.
As a leader, you have a responsibility to foster a working environment where people can voice their ideas, concerns, and mistakes without a detrimental effect on their mental health.
To show your team that you care about them and see them as more than just a resource to achieve your goals, the first step is boosting your ability to be aware and present.
Be aware of yourself 🌿
Before making changes, identifying your behavioral tendencies is crucial. When being around your team, try to focus on yourself, and check:
How do I approach my teammates? Is that the way I’d like to be approached?
How did I handle that person’s behavior? What was the end result in this situation?
What feelings come up when talking to this person? Why is this affecting me in such a way?
Pro tip: Check out this talk we had with Rita Sakus on the difference between Leadership vs Management. While listening, try thinking about your previous experiences and behavioral patterns that might be identified to increase your self-awareness.
Be aware of others 🌾
Try to observe the effect your behaviors have on others:
How do they respond to you? Is that the response you wished to receive?
Also, try to notice the changes in your team’s behaviors:
Have they been joining meetings late?
Are they working overtime?
Has their performance changed?
If you start to notice changes to the way the teammate usually behaves, it might be an indication that something is happening to them and they might need your support. Rather than coming in hot with an improvement plan, try to understand the reasons that might be causing the changes.
Listen to Aurelia Hack discuss the ways on how to foster psychological wellbeing in your team.
Support your team 🌱
Have a look at the ways identified by HBR to support your team below. Press on the visual to download the handout and use these ways as guidance:
Book check-ins with every one of your teammates this month. Prepare for it based on the tips HERE.
Try out the Balance Teams tool with your team to prompt being more open (Get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org for access or email the contact person for your organization directly: Deimante -> email@example.com or Ieva -> firstname.lastname@example.org).
Promote the tools you have for supporting mental health. If you use them - share your experience.
Make YOUR mental health a priority. Start small and once a week:
-Take a break from your work station. Go for a quick walk before work or during your break. 🌳
-Take the time for a quick exercise. Go for a run, do some yoga or go boxing - whatever works for you. 🧘
-Share your experience with the team. Be that a struggle you’ve faced or a joyous moment, show them that being open has nothing to do with weakness. 🗣
Dedicate time to check the resources below:
Exploring the Art of Leading with Love:
Guide for people managers. Supporting Mental Health at Work:
How to write and implement the Mental Health Strategy:
A Guide to Preventing and Reducing Stress At Work:
Practical ways to support your team’s Mental Health in Hybrid Working:
For further advice on supporting yourself and your teams, join your company representative in a monthly call with Mindletic and bring your questions along. 🌱