Mental health in the workplace

Mental health in the workplace

By employer disability information
Thursday, 28th April 2016

Why create a workplace open to discussing mental health ?

It makes good business sense to support employees who are struggling with mental health problems.

Mental health in Ireland costs €3 billion, according to the Mental Health Commission.

The costs to business include:

  • Reduced productivity in the workplace
  • Poor performance/ Reduced morale
  • Absenteeism
  • Presenteeism and Low motivation
  • High staff turnover
  • Management time to deal with issues
  • Temporary cover needed
  • Poor decision making

Mental health difficulties are hidden disabilities in more ways than one – unlike a physical disability there is no visible sign of the disability and the stigma attached can be more crippling. Examples of mental illnesses include; depression, attention deficit disorder, schizophrenia, agoraphobia and many more. These conditions can be completely debilitating to an employee and can make performing everyday tasks extremely difficult.

Managers can assist by adopting the following actions:

  • Take time to talk to the person privately
  • Be honest in assessing the employee’s recent performance
  • Be clear about what someone can and can’t do
  • Ask the person what would help them at work – reasonable accommodations
  • Keep the dialogue going (even if the person is on sick leave)

Source: headway.ie & other