Building and maintaining a mentally healthy workplace is an important part of keeping your people safe, but it can be difficult to know where to start. To help get NSW businesses on the right track, icare recently piloted a workshop looking at how to identify the risk factors that can lead to poor mental health and how to develop tailored strategies to address these risks.
Held in support of World Mental Health Day on 10 October 2019, the workshop brought together 15 medium-large NSW businesses from a range of industries to learn about the important role businesses play in promoting good mental health.
Creating a mentally healthy workplace strategy
Facilitators Jennifer Cameron, Esther Ekkelenkamp and Mel Bonifacio from icare’s Injury Prevention team guided everyone through some important steps in creating a mentally healthy workplace strategy, including consultation and communication with staff and gaining leadership commitment. Interactive activities, case studies and the opportunity to share experiences and tips with other businesses rounded out the day, with majority of participants coming away feeling confident to start work on developing a strategy to promote better mental health in their own workplace.
One of the participants, Ian Sharratt - Manager WHS, Workers Comp & Wellbeing at Benevolent Society, is already taking steps to implement a mental health strategy in his workplace.
“A lot of organisations are currently faced with the challenge of creating a mentally healthy workplace. It can be daunting working out where to start as the landscape has shifted markedly in the last couple of years.This workshop provided practical advice on not only identifying psychosocial risk but qualifying and quantifying it to help build a compelling call to action. The course materials basically form the toolkit for the workplace. Less than a week after the course, I have introduced this to my team and we’ve started planning our implementation”, said Ian.
Ian was equally impressed with the quality of the presenters, who really brought the themes of the day to life.
“They (‘the presenters’) have a great mix of experience in and around rehabilitation, workers’ compensation and safety and are completely pragmatic in their approach”, he added.
Following the success of this pilot, icare plans to run further workshops to help more NSW businesses focus on this important part of keeping NSW workers safe.