Was introduced in 2018 by the International Stress Management Association UK to raise awareness and reduce stigma and the theme this year is Working Together to Build Resilience and Reduce Stress.

Stress affects us all, and a certain level of stress can actually help us to get our work done; helping us to hit deadlines etc. However, high levels of stress, or stress over a long period of time can become a serious problem. Stress, depression or anxiety accounts for 27% of all work-related illness in construction alone*.

Organisations have a key obligation, by law, to look after their staff’s mental health. The HSE provide information on the causes, signs, how to undertake risk assessments and help they can provide assistance.

And we are seeing many organisations doing great work to support their staff:

  • Many companies provide access to training for their staff to become Mental Health First Aiders (MHFAs) so they can provide help and support to their colleagues.
  • We see organisations providing Employee Assistance Programmes (EAP) for staff to reach and speak confidentially 24/7 about issues at home and at work
  • Charities such as Mind and the Lighthouse Charity work in partnership with organisations by providing their expertise in mental health, and in turn the organisations provide them with financial support
  • Organisations can also support charities in spreading the word, and completing challenges to help raise this awareness and support.

We are seeing much working together, but the bar must continue to be pushed further and further.

Organisations ultimately need to create cultures that do not provoke ill health through unhealthy stress. Culture where there is equal challenge and support. Cultures where the people come first. This can only come about through true leadership.

*The Lighthouse Charity

Photo by Li Ying at Unsplash