Posted: August 13th, 2013
MENTAL HEALTH IN THE WORKPLACE
The most important aspect of an organization that is often overlooked, and which determines its efficiency to a significant extent, is its employees. Without its human resource, an organization has the potential of becoming obsolete and seeing its operations grind to an undesirable halt. Therefore, the well-being of the employees is very important to the organization if success is to be achieved. Employee issues such as emotions, drug abuse, burnout, stress, depression, and other mental health problems facing the employees can be a huge cost to the organization due to reduced productivity cost of treatment that might not solve the problem completely (Jeffrey et al 2003, 45). Therefore, an organization’s success is dependent on the soundness and mental health of the employees who perform various tasks to achieve set goals and objectives (Ibid, n.d, 73). As a manager, it is important to consider some of the issues within the organization that affect the mental health of employees including occupational concerns, some common issue in the organization and common problems with employees.
Modern organizations recognize that employees are the greatest asset. Therefore, ensuring to value this asset as well as ensuring that it is in the right working condition is necessary for the success of the organization. Every function within the organization has to have some human input in it in order to operate. Humans are affected by many things unlike other assets. Therefore, their working condition can only be maintained by having a good working environment as well as good incentives that offer security. Mental health issues are among the major contributors in affecting the work quality of employees within any organization (Jeffrey et al 2003, 57). Therefore, any mental health policy should help the organization to ensure that the health of the employees is covered. This helps the company to guarantee that its employees will be working well without any problems that cost the organization such as low productivity.
After reading the book, Mental Health and Productivity in the Workplace: A Handbook for Organizations and Clinicians, I have learnt that there are occupational concerns within the organizations that affect the mental health of employees. Some of these concerns include executive development that focuses on assessment, treatment, and coaching aimed at improving employees and executive distress where employees are under stress due to occupational demands. The other issues are loosing job or unemployment insecurity where employees fear loosing their job, sending employees overseas with their families or new places as expatriates, and work issues that affect individuals such as office politics. All these issues affect individuals in different ways and have an effect on their mental health. Majority of them are quite demanding in such things as going abroad and office politics that affect working relations in the office. As a manager, I realize that I am tasked with the responsibility of ensuring good intervention methods (Jeffrey et al 2003, 57).
Another area that affects the mental health of employees comes from common issues within the organization such as how leadership and the organizational culture create a winning corporate culture. The culture of an organization determines how employees relate to each other as well as the customers of the organization. It also sets the mood and attitude of the employees towards work. Another important issue within the organization is the family problems at home (Kevin, Kelloway and Barling, 2011, 299). This is the first place where a person belongs and its problems could be extended to the organization. Additionally, psychiatric problems cause workplace problems, emotional crises, and violence within the workplace (Jeffrey et al 2003, 137). They affect the whole organization since productivity is greatly lowered due to the mental health of employees.
Another area within the organization that can affect mental health of employees comes from common problems of the employees. Difficulties do not lack where humans are working together. Some of them include burnout and depression, anxiety and stress, personality that can determine getting along with others, abuse of drugs such as alcohol and emotional aliments (Ibid n.d, 123). These factors can greatly affect the mental health of employees within the organization. Therefore, it is necessary to try to reduce such problems including the aforementioned ones in order to ensure that employees have little of such problems. Their health is the health of the organization.
From studying the text, I have realized that having a mental health policy that ensures cost effectiveness and effective treatment as well as diagnosis of health issues in employees is a valuable asset within any organization. It has the ability to reduce absenteeism and low output, and increase the morale and motivation of employees (Ibid, n.d, 85). The best mental health policy to ensure optimal productivity of employees is a continuous one. It should seek to identify the problems as they arise as well as anticipate them before they happen in order to set the right intervention measures that guarantee to solve the problem at the root cause instead of treating after damage is already done. The policies should ensure to carry out studies that identify the root causes of problems within the organization in order to set up intervention measures that can eliminate such problems in the future.
As earlier mentioned, organizations have been loosing a lot of revenues and money as well due to low productivity of employees. The main factors contributing to this include mental issues that employees have to bear, as well the lack of effective treatment to guarantee better health. With such problems, it becomes difficult for any individual to perform at their best. In order to ensure that employees are mentally healthy, organizations need to identify measures in order to assess areas that cause such problems. They are quite diverse, but organizations need to implement good health policies in order to maintain the health of their employees as well as listen to their mental health issues (Schmidt 2010, 68). Implementing a health policy that is cost effective as well as ensures to serve the needs of the employees, there is a need to understand the causes of their problems within the organization as well as emotions, executive effectiveness, and factors that affect change (Ibid n.d, 78).
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