Recent global events such as inflation, the COVID-19 pandemic and the conflict in Ukraine understandably have many people feeling stressed. Things can be made worse by a busy workplace where employees feel overwhelmed.
Depression ranks high among top workplace problems. Studies show that at least 12 billion working days are lost yearly to depression and anxiety, costing companies $1 trillion in productivity.
Poor mental health affects employees’ productivity, decreases morale and promotes a toxic workplace. This can lead to workers leaving the company — forcing businesses to find and train replacements. Therefore, looking out for mental health is essential for any organization’s success.
What Causes Poor Mental Health in the Workplace?
There can be many causes of poor mental health, from common occurrences to something specific to each individual. These things might seem small on their own but can add up to create a stressful work environment.
Finding Inequality in the Workplace
One of the biggest causes of a stressful workplace is a culture of inequality. Employees feeling like they are being discriminated against because of their race or gender is a bad sign of a toxic work area. This can lead to strife between colleagues and management — directly affecting the company’s productivity.
Inequality is an important social issue and can damage a company’s reputation if workplace discrimination exists.
Another cause of poor mental health in the workplace is being overworked. Having a lot of business might benefit the company overall, but employees can feel overwhelmed by the increased workload. This can lead to burnout and depression, which can spiral into other health concerns.
Poor workflow management can make people less productive even if they work more hours. Exhausted employees also lead to a drop in the quality of service. They might express dissatisfaction with management if they perceive they are being treated poorly.
Feeling Undervalued by the Company
It is essential for workers to feel like a company values their beliefs and contributions. Employees will not work as hard as they can for a business they think undervalues their efforts. They can become depressed and even angry if management does not communicate how valuable they are.
This can harm workplace efficiency and the company’s image of prospective hires. People who work in a stressful environment are likely to tell others about their negative experiences with the company.
How to Help Employees’ Mental Health
The workplace is supposed to be an area of productivity, but it’s also where employees should feel safe and welcome. This is why it is important to foster a workplace culture of inclusivity.
People like to feel valued by their employers and colleagues. A company that does not celebrate the diversity and success of its workers can indirectly cause them to feel more stressed. Management should regularly engage with them to hear their opinions and concerns.
Companies can invest in automated solutions to combat overwork. If processes are too tedious or time-consuming, they can acquire software to help employees complete tasks quickly and efficiently.
Studies show that, although people might feel overwhelmed in the workplace, many feel they cannot tell their supervisor or management. This is due to feelings of shame or fear of punishment for not working as hard as they could.
Employers should listen and empathize if employees feel overworked or their contributions are not valued. Doing so will show they care about their workers and will address their concerns.
Taking Care of Workers Is Good for the Company
Workers are the life of any company and organization — operations grind to a halt without them. That’s why looking out for their mental health is essential to running a company. Happy employees mean greater efficiency and quality of service, making work more enjoyable for everyone.
Devin Partida writes about investor technologies, big data and apps. She is also the Editor-in-Chief of ReHack.com.