It’s common knowledge that construction is one of the most dangerous industries in the United States. Usually when we broach the subject, we focus on the physical risks–but mental heath is also a big issue.
You only need to consider the fact that construction leads US industries in number of suicides, and comes in second in suicide rates, to understand that.
Help your team understand the steps they can take to improve their mental health—and their allover well-being.
Why Mental Health Matters to Your Business
Mental illness is more prevalent than you may realize. In fact, up to 25% of the U.S. population experiences mental illness at any given time, and nearly two-thirds of people with diagnosable mental disorders do not seek treatment.
Investing in mental health and substance use disorders yields positive return on investment compared to the economic impact of absenteeism, presenteeism, and loss of productivity resulting from untreated mental health conditions.
How to Help Your Workers Improve Their Mental Health
You know that mental health is important to your business, and can make a positive impact on your workers’ lives. But that doesn’t mean you should immediately begin development programs or scheduling training sessions!
Why not? Because the first step to really offering help is understanding the need in your organization.
Needs assessments and ongoing evaluations are key to the success of mental health improvement and suicide prevention. Consider taking one or more of these steps during Mental Health Month:
- Organize a focus group of your workers
- Conduct in-depth interviews with key stakeholders, or offer surveys
- Analyze organizational data to learn more about employee assistance program usage, absenteeism, and other issues that could be impacted (or impact) mental health
- Encourage your team to get screened so they can understand their own needs better. (Here’s a great place to start, and this is also a helpful tool.)
Other Ways to Participate in Mental Health Month
- Share information about mental illness and mental health in your corporate newsletter. The National Alliance on Mental Illness is a wonderful resource.
- Share tips for improved mental health with your team. Ask for their top tips, too! Encouraging conversation is a big step toward reducing the stigma of mental illness.
- Invite a mental health professional to present during a lunch-and-learn. A great topic to suggest: healthful ways to manage life’s challenges, and steps to take if risky behaviors are becoming a habit.
- If your company offers an EAP, make sure your employees are aware of it!
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