Become a Mindful Employer

Getting involved with MINDFUL EMPLOYER through the national Charter for Employers Who are Positive About Mental Health and the local Mindful Employer Leeds Network are important steps on your journey to becoming a Mindful Employer. 

Signing the MINDFUL EMPLOYER Charter is about working towards the Charter’s principles, not immediate fulfilment of them. Signing up is a step along the journey not the end of it. 

The principles of the Charter are:

By Employers, For Employers: It’s about increasing awareness of mental health, helping you deliver your business, providing support networks and information,and making it healthier to talk about mental health 

Good Practices not Great Promises: Being part of the initiative can help you recruit and retain valued and talented members of staff. It is completely voluntary and will support you as an employer to work towards putting its principles in to practice in ways which are sensible, achievable and realistic

Adapted and Adopted: You are the expert on your business. MINDFUL EMPLOYER will support you in adapting its principles within your own policies, structure and culture, adopting them for the longer-term benefit of your staff

Safe People no Scary Places: People can feel uncomfortable about talking with their manager about a mental health condition. Attitudes are improving but mental ill health remains an area of fear and stigma for many. By being a MINDFUL EMPLOYER you will demonstrate that you are willing to enable disclosures of mental ill health to take place without fear of rejection or prejudice. 

10 Steps Employer Toolkit

This toolkit is a great starting point for organisations to embed good practice and keep the mental health and wellbeing conversation going. 
The 10 Steps Toolkit is a free online resource, developed in Leeds by employers for employers, which is designed to help organisations to develop ideas on creating positive working environments, supporting employee wellbeing and challenging the stigma surrounding mentally ill health in the workplace. 

The 10 Steps focus on the following aims:
– Engage with your employees, increase their awareness of Mental Health
Educate: Help your employees to understand their role, building confidence and reducing stigma
Embed: Implement a solid approach to prevent bullying and discrimination and use a sustainable approach to supporting employees

The 10 Steps Toolkit is a great resource to use on your journey to becoming a Mindful Employer, access it now!

What can you do as an Employer?

Take a positive approach
Stress, anxiety and depression cause more working days lost than any other health problem. Since the 2008-9 recession, there has been an increase in work stressors such as job insecurity, work intensity and inter-personal conflict at work. Absenteeism cause business critical issues, as does ‘presenteeism’; employees under-performing and struggling to work, perhaps for fear of losing their job.

Communicate
It is well recognised that people do not feel comfortable about disclosing a mental health condition for fear of a negative reaction, especially if their job is on the line. As an employer you are not there to be a counsellor or therapist but to create a positive environment which allows people to talk confidentially, which is crucial. 

Get Help
Specialist support for employers is available and it is important to liaise with GPs, occupational health providers and mental health professionals. Try and gain permission to contact someone: it will be in everyone’s interest to do so. 

Improve Knowledge
Mental Health Awareness Training will help with understanding about mental health conditions and enable managers and colleagues to support staff experiencing mental health difficulties.

Prevent
It costs less to retain experienced employees than recruit and train new ones. Creating a mentally healthy workplace improves productivity, increases profit and brings the best out of everyone. Demonstrate commitment by signing the MINDFUL EMPLOYER Charter for Employers Who are Positive About Mental Health.