Reasons why mental health should be a top priority in the workplace

February 17, 2022

Mental health has a negative impact on a company’s bottom line. Burn-out is causing employees to leave their jobs and those that do not quit experience lower productivity. According to American Psychiatric Association, employees with unresolved depression experience a 35% reduction in productivity. It is cost-effective for employers in the construction industry to pay attention to their employees’ mental health.

Mental health red flags in the workplace

  • Employees who frequently call out sick
  • Managers that consistently struggle to meet their productivity targets
  • A high employee turnover rate
  • Concerns about stress among your employees

Getting rid of stigma and shame in the construction industry

The World Health Organisation estimates that 300 million people globally live with depression, with many also exhibiting symptoms of anxiety. Because of shame and stigma, there is reluctance among employees to talk about mental health issues. This can also lead to a fear of getting treatment. The solution is education and transparency. Employers and employees should normalize having dialogue about mental hygiene.

The benefits of addressing employee wellness

  • It is cost-effective for the employer and beneficial for the employee
  • Lower total medical costs
  • Increased productivity
  • Lower absenteeism
  • Decreased disability costs

Company culture must prioritize mental health

Construction companies must make employee wellness a priority. This begins at the top, because employees look to their leaders for guidance, inspiration, and approval. Employers who adequately support employee well-being are more likely to see a positive impact on productivity, time management and employee retention. There should therefore be willingness by the employer to listen to employees and be receptive to change.

Management quality should improve

According to The Harris Poll (August 2021) six of the top ten reasons employees would stay at an employer represent attributes connected to management, leadership and culture. Employees turn to managers for support and when managers recommend mental health resources, employees benefit. As a resource, counselling and therapy can also have a positive impact on productivity.

Tips for employees

  • Diversify your input and pay attention to what you need.
  • Wrap up the day recognizing your accomplishments list versus your incomplete list.
  • Do your research when it comes to quitting.

Tips for employers

  • Elevate mental health to a company value.
  • Offer mental health training.
  • Make sure to regularly assess employee workload.
  • Encourage healthy diets and exercise to your employees.

Kaufman Search & Consulting

Kaufman Search & Consulting works with leading Contractors and top-level talent throughout the country, building teams for tomorrow’s projects one perfect fit at a time. We use extensive know-how and our solid relationships with key decision makers at our client companies to elevate your executive career in construction.

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