The importance of mental health at work

Many factors can impact staff morale and outside factors at this time of year including dark days and miserable weather can exacerbate low mood for our people. With many people continuing to work remotely, it can be difficult to spot when people are feeling excessively flat, so let’s use Shrove Tuesday this year as an opportunity to check in with our people.

Warning signs:

  • No Smiling: Does that sound too simplistic? It shouldn’t – if you have team members who are usually happy souls, then the lack of smiles is a massive indicator.
  • Slow to respond or communicate: Are they slow to communicate or respond on teams or Skype chats?
  • Lack of sense of humour: Is there a lack of social interaction or sense of fun.
  • Lack of Enthusiasm: When people feel down it drains their physical energy; they struggle to concentrate, let alone have any innovative flair or be willing to go the extra mile. If anything a more ‘work to rule’ culture will develop.
  • Snappiness or irritability: When a normally relaxed team member starts to become short or appear irritable it’s definitely worth exploring why.

So now we’ve looked at some of the warning signs, here’s what we can do to improve staff morale:

Listen: You know your staff. If a generally upbeat, hardworking member of your team has flagged up a problem then don’t ignore it, it won’t just go away. Take the time out to listen to all their concerns and provide a time frame for getting back to them with your thoughts and decisions.

Investigate: Busy managers can sometimes be too reactive in order to achieve quick fixes to move onto the next pressing agenda item. It’s important to get to the bottom of any issue, to understand if it is work or home related and to explore what can be done to improve things.

Communicate: Work with your people to determine how workload issues can be resolved or they feel more engaged or invigorated about their job. Regular one to ones are helpful to stay connected with our people, it is helpful to talk about how they feel first, before getting focused on tasks.

Hopefully, we’ve prompted you to check on your own staff’s morale, if you want to formalise this process you could carry out regular employee engagement surveys. You can download our free Employee Engagement Survey Template and make sure you act on the results!

Employee Engagement Survey Template

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