When it comes to the importance of employees’ mental health and wellbeing, the stats speak for themselves: in a recent CIPD UK survey, 75% of HR professionals stated that these would be the most important areas in which to provide support to staff in 2023.
In many ways, it’s hardly surprising. Covid, the conflict in Ukraine, the cost-of-living crisis, the strike economy – these have all taken their toll on employees’ mental resilience, in addition to the everyday stresses and strains that often accompany work itself. The challenge for businesses is that if they don’t offer adequate support to their staff, they could lose them to an employer that is perceived to do it better.
But wellbeing is a complex topic – so what can employers start doing immediately to get to grips with it, for their own and their employees’ sake?
Nobody’s on their own
One of the key exacerbators of mental stress and poor wellbeing is the perception of loneliness – the feeling that you are facing challenges and climbing up mountains all on your own.
In fact, according to a study on the Government’s website, the cost of loneliness to UK employers has been estimated to be £2.5 billion every year.
At Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce, we address this head-on. Not only do our members instantly become part of a community of over 60,000 employees and employers like them, but they benefit from opportunities to connect with those who can support them and help lighten the load.
Build your support network
Struggling to understand a business issue that those around you don’t have the expertise to articulate to you? We can introduce you to every kind of specialist in our membership to clarify the problem, from recruiters to immigration lawyers, diversity experts to employee health scheme providers, HR consultants to part-time Finance Directors, and many more besides.
In all cases, friendly initial advice always comes at no charge, and at our networking events you also get the chance to meet people face-to-face, and build a network that will leave you and your teams feeling less isolated and overwhelmed.
Likewise, through our webinars and learning resources, we help simplify complex business topics you may be grappling with, helping you to gain knowledge that instils confidence and helps stave off the imposter syndrome that is so often associated with diminished workplace wellbeing.
Learn more about wellbeing
Of course, there’s much more to wellbeing and mental health than simply meeting and talking to people (although that’s important!), and to this end we’re promoting courses, awards, and events specifically to help local employers and their teams – not just Chamber members - understand and keep on top of wellbeing challenges.
These include recognition for workplaces that are committed to improving and maintaining a healthy and happy workplace (in the shape of the Healthy Workspace Standards framework), and mental health awareness courses to introduce employers and their teams to some common mental health issues, and show them how to support those suffering from them.
Next month, the focus on wellbeing will continue with the Breakfast Workplace Health and Wellbeing Event on 23rdMay, at the Ridgeway Centre in Milton Keynes.
This will explore, amongst other topics, how supporting people with mental health issues to remain in work or return to it can increase retention and productivity, and how a more inclusive workplace can contribute to worker wellbeing that has a positive impact on business performance.
Book your place here!
Keep well – and join us now
Employee wellbeing is crucial to any business’s success – and the tougher the going gets, the more critical it becomes. Joining Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce connects you and your teams to a community that is here to help and support wherever we can.
A problem shared, as they say, is a problem halved.
For more information on how to join Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce, visit www.chamber-business.com, or call 01582 522448.