As an employer of more than 5,000 people, we know that modern life is tough at times for all our colleagues and can put a strain on their mental health.
For all, this can be the pressures that comes with balancing work with family life and the challenge of social-economic change that can cause times of stress and mental health issues. However, for others, it’s something to be lived with. An underlying illness that rises and falls in intensity but is always sitting with us like an unwelcome guest.
In the UK this week it’s Mental Health Awareness Week. This is just one of many such markers around the world each year. For us at NGA HR, these are not token points of acknowledgment. These events are timely reminders that mental health is not a timed calendar event. It’s a reality for us all.
Whether you’re directly or indirectly affected, when you look around your office at any time, there will be someone who’s having a tough time. This might be you. This might be your colleague, your manager or a member of the facilities team who seamlessly provides essential back office support. It’s for this reason that it’s essential to have an open talking and listening culture.
Last October at NGA HR, we launched our own #IWillListen talking and listening culture. It’s important to us as a community that everyone feels they can talk in confidence. That they will be listened to and action plans will be put in place where necessary.
This programme has now been extended to include monthly focus events. We believe that education, involvement and an environment that recognises that mental health is a reality is essential for us if we want to grow as a business. After all, a business can only be healthy if its workforce is.
I am listening. Are you?