One in four people will experience mental illness in their lives, and we spend a third of our lives at work. Therefore, workplaces must be ready to support their people, a need that was greatly exacerbated in the COVID-19 pandemic. A global food brand identified this and asked us to help strengthen their initiatives. They wanted to spread awareness of possible mental health issues and the relevant support available within their organisation, and to build greater confidence in their line managers in engaging with their teams on the topic.
Firstly, we made a programme of unpacking sessions available to the entire company, teaching clinically-recognised content about mental health, signs of mental distress, and actions to take if needed; such as making use of the company’s Employee Assistance Programme (EAP). Tailored specifically to the unique conditions in the company, these sessions were well received and created a common language and understanding for everyone to share. We then ran targeted training specifically with people managers, in the form of 3-hour sessions that gave them the tools and techniques needed to oversee and manage the mental wellbeing of their reports.
Over 300 members of staff from across the business were trained in total, with immensely positive feedback. The usage of the firm’s EAP saw an uplift of 50% as a direct result, as awareness grew and staff felt comfortable seeking help for themselves and others. The firm said: “Byrne Dean created a safe space to both inform and involve all our employees which has helped kick-start our journey to break the stigma around mental health in the workplace.”