Are you finding it difficult to shift from work-from-home or the hybrid work model to full-time office-based work? Have you seen a change in your colleagues’ or employees’ behaviour after the Covid-19 pandemic? Have some of your colleagues/ employees experienced loss of their loved one(s) during the pandemic? Are you experiencing burnout while returning to the office? Have you noticed a distinct change in your work culture and its impact on your organization’s growth?
If you answered yes to any of the aforementioned questions, you have been seeing the impact of mental health at your workplace. Although we often focus on productivity at work, we tend to forget some of the driving factors that boost the productivity and aid in organization’s growth - mental health is one of such factors! Qualtrics conducted a study in 2020 which indicated that 67% of people are experiencing increased stress, 57% of people have increased anxiety and 54% of people are emotionally exhausted during this pandemic. Considering the long-term impact of the pandemic, these statistics will keep on changing in the upcoming years.
Rakesh Sharma (he/him), Director of Lilac Insights and Founder of AtEase - an inclusive mental health platform, shares that, ‘While reaching targets is primarily how every company works, we do acknowledge that it can be overwhelming for many. Our hope from the AtEase Wellness program is that it will help the employees to deal with the inevitable stressors that our work or personal life pose for us. We aim to foster trust and open communication among the employees through which we could also review our structures and policies to support their well-being.’
Being a business-person himself, Rakesh further adds, ‘As an entrepreneur, I see a very obvious correlation between mental health, job satisfaction, and productivity. Employees who are satisfied and happy improve the overall energy of the company. We actively encourage our employees to take care of their physical and mental health so that even the collective health of the company stays well. In this process, employee wellness programs make it possible.’
Richa Vashista (she/her), chief mental health expert at AtEase, shares that ‘Employee wellness programs not only benefit the employees but also the organization at large. If we look at the mental health services in India, organizations have been taking a reactive stance to address mental health when their employees are experiencing burnout and extreme stress resulting in higher turnover rate. Instead, if we start taking preventative steps to avoid reaching a point of burnout by supporting our employees’ well-being, the organization will benefit from saving many resources and overhead costs in the long term.’
To address the challenges of each individual and to create a safe and inclusive space at an organizational level, AtEase offers a wide variety of mental health services such as Employee AtEase Index (an organizational mental health assessment), online individual therapy sessions, support groups, and customized workshops and webinars. What makes these mental health services unique is our intersectional, trauma-informed, queer affirmative and social justice oriented approach. Supporting employees’ mental health often results in a happier workplace, increased job satisfaction and productivity and lower attrition rate.