Pioneering better mental health in the workplace.
When you’re at work, the environment around you can have a massive impact on your mental health.
If you enjoy your job, it can be good for your mental health – we do spend most of our waking hours at work – but a negative working environment can lead to both physical and mental health problems.
Not only is our mental health an important part of our wellbeing, depression and anxiety have a significant economic impact.
According to the WHO, the estimated cost to the global economy is US$ 1 trillion per year in lost productivity.
There are many effective actions that organizations can take to promote mental health in the workplace and such actions may also benefit productivity.
Josh Krichefski, CEO of global media agency, Mediacom told us about his vision for better mental health at work.
He leads 4,400 employees across 37 offices worldwide, and is a vocal supporter of mental health in the workplace, both in his own organisation and beyond and as a business leader, he’s leading the way in changing the culture of how employees ‘live’ at work.
At the beginning of every meeting, for example, Josh asks attendees how they are feeling.
“It’s not a loaded question, and I don’t expect an answer that tells me how their workload is,” he says. “I genuinely want to know how they are feeling, and if someone asked me back I would answer honestly.”
In an interview on Mary Portas’s podcast Work Like A Woman Josh explains how and why the drive for mental health at Mediacom started:
“We introduced a thing called “My mental health story “ where on Mental Health Awareness Week 5 people sent out their own personal story on an email to the whole company with their name to it where they talked about their own personal mental health issue or a loved one’s – and you could literally have heard a pin drop when that email went out – the whole company read it and immediately people would respond to that person, either saying ‘well done for being brave – or…that really resonated with me or I’ve had a similar experience myself but never felt I could talk about it – or I’ve had a similar experience and I can give you advice about the way that we dealt with it’ – and overnight – it changed things.”
Josh and his team created a vibe at work that addressed mental health in the workplace, and knew that change should start at the top. Two years ago, the organisation launched a training course to teach the importance of understanding feelings and building resilience for senior leaders.
Mental Health Allies was born.
Here, Josh explains in a video taken from Time To Change 2019 campaign:
“I hope to show everyone in our organisation that we all have mental health and, by understanding that, we can successfully destigmatise mental health issues,” says Josh.
Read more about Josh’s vision for better mental health at work via his blog page:
for any employees and businesses:
Mind Workplace Index – Mind