MENTALLY healthier workplaces must start at the top with leaders influencing workplace culture and Ballarat leaders are next in focus to start setting good examples.
National mental health body beyondblue, in partnership with Institute of Managers and Leaders, is hosting a workshop in Ballarat on Tuesday in a bid to improve work environments and employee well-being across this region.
This comes as beyondblue finds one in five Australians are experiencing a mental health condition, but only 52 per cent of workers feel their workplace promotes good mental health.
beyondblue chief executive Georgie Harman said employers were increasingly concerned about employee well-being and mindful of the important role mental health strategies could play.
But many did not act because managers did not know where to start – which is with leaders.
Leadership Outlook, which is rolling out across Australia, aims to help organisations tailor a strategy that works for their team and identifying areas to improve.
The workshop encourages leaders to form a clear plan on key actions, including: addressing mental health risks; fostering an anti-bullying culture; well-defined job roles; monitoring how employees carry out their tasks; promoting work-life balance; combatting mental health stigma; and, suicide prevention and awareness.
Success then also relies on employee participation and ongoing workplace communication on mental health issues.
Ms Harman said the workshop was a starting point in the how-to and what-to-do in developing mentally healthy workplaces.
“It is heartening to see leaders taking these issues seriously,” Ms Harman said.
“A mentally healthy workforce can increase productivity and is more engaged.”
The workshop will also feature a panel of Ballarat business leaders to share their experience in workplace mental health.
beyondblue’s Heads Up website also offers free resources for employers and to help employees stay mentally well. This can be found at headsup.org.au.
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