Why Mental Health Matters to Workplace Productivity

The linkage between mental health and workplace productivity is no longer a topic of debate. The mental well-being of employees significantly contributes to their output and overall performance. We are now looking into how organizations can harness the potential of their employees’ mental health to optimize productivity.

The Unseen Force Driving Productivity

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health recognized the importance of mental health to productivity, initiating the POE Center. The center’s objective is to improve workforce mental health, aiming to enhance productivity across diverse work sectors [1].

Overcoming Stigma: The First Step to Progress

One of the critical barriers to addressing mental health issues in the workplace is stigma. Despite being a subtle factor, it profoundly impacts productivity levels [2]. Eliminating stigma requires open communication, understanding, and compassion, leading to a more productive and inclusive workspace.

Accounting for the Hidden Costs of Mental Health

The cost of mental health problems in the workplace extends beyond healthcare expenses and lost earnings. It also encompasses hidden costs, such as reduced productivity and compromised well-being [2]. Therefore, prioritizing mental health is a strategic investment towards enhanced productivity.

The Workplace: A Crucial Setting for Mental Health Initiatives

Johns Hopkins suggests a novel perspective: viewing the workplace as a critical environment for addressing mental health issues. With a considerable proportion of the population employed, the workplace offers a unique platform to improve mental health and subsequently productivity [3].

Five Strategies for Enhancing Mental Health in Your Business

  1. Create a Supportive Environment: Foster a culture that encourages open communication about mental health issues.
  2. Provide Resources: Offer resources like counselling and mental health services to help employees manage their mental health.
  3. Promote Work-Life Balance: Encourage employees to maintain a balance between their work responsibilities and personal life. This can include flexible work hours, remote work options, and generous leave policies.
  4. Train Managers: Equip managers with the necessary training to recognize and address mental health issues among their team members.
  5. Prioritize Mental Health Education: Regularly educate employees about mental health, including common issues, how to seek help, and how to support others.
  6. Check-in Often: Keep questions about mental health in 1:1s, employee surveys, and other communication mechanisms. Keep asking the tough questions.

To sum up, mental health has a profound impact on workplace productivity. By implementing strategies that prioritize employee mental well-being, businesses can enhance productivity levels, fostering a healthier and more successful organization.

References: [1] Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (2021). “Mental Wellness at Work”. Link [2] Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania (2023). “Mental Health in the Workplace: How We Can Move Beyond the Stigma”. Link [3] Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (2023). “Mental Health in the Workplace”. Link


We’re here to help

Get in touch with us today and start getting insights into your employee engagement.