It’s Health Information Week, and today’s theme is mental health and wellbeing. With Mind reporting that 1 in 4 people experience mental health problems each year, finding a work environment and culture that can support you and your mental health has never been more important.
If you’re considering a career move, Cuttsy+Cuttsy’s mental health first aider and HR Manager, Kate McCabe, shares some thoughts on what mental health features to consider that a potential new employer may offer.
🚑 health insurance – many organisations offer health insurance as a benefit. Most private healthcare providers include mental health support, such as counselling services and access to wellbeing apps. Check out eligibility for your dependents too, so that all of your family can be supported in maintaining good mental health.
🚦mental health first aider – not an in-house therapist, but a team or individual trained to identify signs of mental health issues in the workplace. They’ll be able to support you and access further help or resources, should you ever need them.
🏡flexible working or hybrid working policies – we all have our preferred way of working and our own out-of-work commitments, so discuss your preferred working patterns at the interview stage. An interviewer not open to such discussions may indicate the organisation isn’t as flexible as they might say they are.
⏰no long hours policies – the marketing agency environment can be renowned for intense projects and long hours. Ask questions about what a typical work day looks like, meet the team and find out how work-life balance is supported. Some agencies will have specific ‘no long hours’ policies in place (including here at Cuttsy+Cuttsy).
📜 accreditations – look for companies that are members of professional bodies or have been accredited via schemes such as Investors in People or Best Places to Work. These are often subject to strict criteria on workplace policies and incorporate feedback from people already working at the company.
👟exercise – proven to be as effective as antidepressants for mild depression, exercise is a vital part of maintaining your mental health. Fitting it in can be tricky though, so ask about flexibility to incorporate exercise into your working day, if there are showering facilities at the office, and find out about schemes such as cycle to work or incentivised gym membership (or in our case, the annual free trainer giveaway).
🥳culture – check out company social channels, ask the team and anyone you know who may already work there, to find out more about the culture. Company social events and team lunches help build personal connections at work, while perks such as annual holiday on your birthday let you celebrate in whatever style works for you!
When it comes to mental health, one size doesn’t fit all, but the right workplace will take it as seriously as your physical health. After all, why should it be treated any differently?
At Cuttsy+Cuttsy, we walk-the-walk when it comes to mental health and are proud to offer all of the features listed and many more. In fact, we’re always looking for other ways to support our amazing team.