Managing a team is truly a people-focused role. If you notice that your team members are suffering from negative mental health symptoms, it may be time to step up your support. Here are several ways that team leaders can provide support for their employees’ mental and emotional health – so the team can focus on their work.
Offer access to counseling and related resources.
Talking about mental health is important – and so is keeping those conversations concrete. Whether it’s health insurance that covers counseling, a list of local services with openings for appointments, or an in-house counseling team, ensure that your employees have access to the counseling and related resources they need. Help your employees become familiar with the resources that are available to them.
Have open discussions about the importance of mental health.
When mental health is treated as taboo, workers are more likely to hide their problems – until they no longer can. Instead, make it clear that you take mental health seriously and wish to support your team. Avoid asking people invasive questions about their specific mental health problems, but do state that you intend to prioritize mental health support with specific resources.
Take mental health information seriously.
It can be tempting to dismiss others’ mental health concerns as “drama” or as unserious, especially if you’re in the habit of minimizing your own mental health needs. Taking employees seriously when they ask for help, however, is an essential first step toward improving matters. Treat requests for information and support seriously.
Manage your team members’ workloads to avoid burnout.
In one survey, 77 percent of US workers reported burnout on the job. The number-one cause of burnout is overwork. When employees are burned out, they cannot focus on their jobs. Their quality of work suffers because they no longer have the mental resources to do the job well. Avoid burnout by managing workloads so that employees can give their full attention to the job in the long term.
Give your teams the support they need to work sustainably.
Often, managing burnout requires an organization to spread its workload among more employees. Bringing in new hires, contract, or temporary team members can help boost mental health and prevent burnout. It can also expose your team to new ideas and inject a fresh outlook to spur innovation.