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Mental Health in the Workforce

Behavioral health is not something that has always been acknowledged within human

resources. It mostly consisted of work topics like performance, recruiting, and training. Being

human means we deal with emotional problems from time to time, and HR leaders who accept

that can offer an even more welcoming work environment.

Incorporating mental health awareness at the start up of a business allows for better

preparation in dealing with behavioral health issues. Management consulting firm McKinsey &

Company conducted a health survey, and found that 75% of employers designated a mental

health leader. Forty percent were appointed to executive roles which assessed benefits, ensured

access to treatment, monitored employee wellbeing, and managed behavioral health programs

(Routt). Small businesses should realize that it will need to be included sometime down the line.

Even if you cannot provide a full-time mental health leader, it is important to leverage the

available resources. Virtual options such as telehealth are more accessible and convenient when

dealing with sensitive topics. Listening to your employees individually, and being creative with

coping solutions goes a long way also. Sometimes, simply affirming their job security calms any

worries they may have.

Dedicating some time to acknowledge the physical and behavioral needs of your

employees is not just a decent gesture, but a lucrative one. You can retain top workers by being

understanding of their personal situations and offering guidance when needed. Utilizing feedback

questionnaires and surveys can provide valuable insight on the status of customers and

employees. Normalizing the topic of mental health in the workforce allows for more personable

relationships, increasing the camaraderie among everyone on the team.


Routt, D. (2021, June 16). Council post: Managing mental health in the workforce: A new

role for HR professionals. Forbes.



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