A whole-person health renaissance is here, and it’s advocating for a better, broader definition of care. Your employees’ overall health is influenced by a myriad of factors, including medical history, lifestyle, environment, ZIP code, nutrition, safety and physical activity. Whole-person health ensures employees are getting the help they need — whether it’s medical, behavioral or emotional — to be their best, most productive selves.
For entrepreneurs or small business owners, it means finding and amplifying those benefits that help your employees be healthy in mind, body and spirit.
Smash the stigma
Stigma is a major barrier that prevents people from getting the behavioral health help they need. Many employees are worried what their employer will think. Forward-thinking employers should lean into good mental health, address stigma and encourage employees to be their best by using the behavioral health resources available.
Sometimes telling your employees isn’t enough. Employee Assistance Programs (EAP) are often misunderstood or overlooked. Take some time to educate your employees on their benefits, promote the program and encourage employees to focus on their own whole-person health. Make sure your employees know about any virtual behavioral health options that are available and more convenient. Familiarize yourself with programs in the community as well that are available to employees 24/7.
Acknowledge stress and burnout
According to Mental Health America, nine in 10 employees report that their workplace stress affects their mental health. Burnout is chronic, workplace stress that is not successfully managed. The six main reasons for burnout are unsustainable workload, perceived lack of control, insufficient rewards for effort, lack of support, lack of fairness and mismatched values of skills. Burnout can have a major impact on productivity. Remember, even the best employers and work cultures can have employees dealing with burnout and looking for flexibility and support.
The whole-person mindset is relevant
Recent consumer surveys by McKinsey & Company said one in four Generation Z respondents report feeling emotional distress. That’s double the number of millennials and more than triple the number of baby boomers. The reality is mental and emotional health are a critical component of treating the whole person and it is only going to be more important as Gen Z becomes a larger percentage of the workforce.
Your business can better recruit and retain top talent when it prioritizes great behavioral health benefits and a whole-person health approach. Talk to your insurance carrier to learn about the resources that are available and begin creating a program that promotes whole-person health.