Workforce Solutions

How Can Employers Improve Their Approach Towards Mental Health?

Cogent Infotech
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Dallas, TX

Uncertainty in the workplace is a known cause of anxiety among employees. Stress erodes the mental health of employees. Between rising infections and the economic havoc caused to the world's economies and businesses, the toll on people's mental health was unprecedented. The pandemic-induced lockdown pushed the whole world into a state of extreme uncertainty. 

When the going is good, most businesses are non-serious or, at best, ambivalent towards the issue of their employees' mental health. However, the pandemic has brought employees' mental health to the center stage. Paying attention to mental health is now an unavoidable imperative for employers. 

Employees experience anxiety, burnout, depression, etc., at the workplace. Other factors outside the workplace, such as parenting/caregiving responsibilities, financial liabilities, societal conditions, etc., add to existing work-related anxieties. All of this takes a severe toll on employees' mental well-being. 

What can employers do? 

Progressive employers are mindful of the importance of the mental well-being of their employees. Good leadership requires business leaders to create a workplace environment that fosters trust and enhances employee engagement. Such a workplace environment improves employees' mental well-being and enhances workplace productivity.

The specific actions that employers can take to improve their approach to employees' mental health include:

Be Role Models

Leaders should not merely claim to care about mental health but should model it in their behavior. Their concern for mental health should be reflected in their conduct at the workplace. While focusing on work and business results, leaders often neglect self-care and setting work-life boundaries. When employers model behavior that demonstrates genuine concern for mental health, employees emulate that model behavior, warding off any mental health issues. 

Foster Connections

Employers need to talk to their employees to understand their concerns. Encourage open communication and listen closely. But take care to ensure a balance do not come across as intrusive or lacking in trust or wanting to micromanage. Communication should signal empathy. What matters is that the employees feel that they can reach out when required. Communication and connection assume special significance now when more of the workforce is remote.


The conditions at work and the team's needs are constantly changing. Maintain an ongoing dialogue: it helps you tune into any concerns early on and communicate your support for mental health. Proactively offer flexibility to enable employees to address the stressors at work: for example, flexible working hours for those with childcare responsibilities. 

Maintain Open Communication

Communicate regularly and keep the team informed of any organizational changes, expectations at work, priorities, and workplace norms. Open communication eliminates stress and anxiety and promotes mental well-being.


Invest in preventive mental health training for everyone leaders, managers, and workers. Training helps dispel common mental health myths and impart the skills necessary to tackle mental health issues. Exercise also helps build awareness, community, and people-to-people support.

Workplace Policies and Practices

Workplace policies and practices should support and promote the healthy work culture you desire. Regularly review and modify procedures to align with work requirements and employee expectations. This signals employers' empathy to the workforce's needs, enhancing employee engagement and mental well-being. 

Measure and Correct

Measure mental health at the workplace. Conducting surveys is a simple yet effective means of understanding employees' needs and the stressors at work. Institute corrective action based on the inputs received from the survey.

The importance of mental health at the workplace cannot be overemphasized. By being mindful of workplace mental health needs, modeling healthy behavior, and building a culture of communication, employers can positively impact the mental well-being of their employees. 

For more such thought-provoking articles, please visit the Cogent Infotech website here.

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