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B2B Marketing, B2B PR, Content we like, Life at Skout, Opinion

Beyond the desk: Prioritising Skout’s mental health

I recently attended a Mental Health Workplace Responder course by St John’s Ambulance. It is now a part of my responsibility to help create awareness of mental health issues at Skout and to be a point of contact for my team. I have discussed my role with the team in great detail so they know what I’m here for, alongside creating a list of reputable organisations who can help with a variety of different problems, from depression and anxiety to financial stresses.

In the fast-paced industry of marketing and PR, where deadlines are tight and client expectations are high, prioritising mental health in the workplace has never been so important.  Statistics by Trades Union Congress show that 55% of workers feel that work is getting more intense and demanding. Creating a healthy and supportive work environment not only promotes employee wellbeing but also helps contribute towards the success of a business. According to Mental Health First Aid, for every £1 spent by employers on mental health interventions, employers could get back £5.30 in reduced absence, presenteeism, and staff turnover. 

With an increasing number of agencies and businesses implementing mental health policies and employee wellbeing benefits, it can be hard to recognise what policies are impactful and what aren’t. A survey by The Mental Health Foundation revealed 12.7% of all sickness days in the UK are attributed to mental health conditions, so are we doing enough to prioritise mental health in the workplace?

Understanding the importance of mental health in marketing and PR

As marketing and PR professionals, we often deal with high client expectations, navigate potentially high-stakes situations and even manage crises from time to time. The dynamic and challenging nature of the industry can take a toll on your mental health if you don’t manage it effectively.

Educating teams and employees on spotting the signs of mental health issues such as stress or burnout including a recent lack of optimism or feeling overwhelmed with their workload, is a great first step in getting people the help they need and encourages a positive workplace for all.

Recognising the signs and symptoms is important, but so is overcoming the stigma regularly associated with mental health issues. Creating an open and accepting atmosphere can help encourage employees to speak up about their mental health challenges, whether that’s to a friend, a colleague, or a member of a mental health team. Even simply educating your team with an awareness campaign is a great way to help people relate and understand, and you can supplement with workshops and training sessions to help educate too.

Do our benefits really have any benefit?

If you look at any job advert for a marketing and PR agency or any business in fact, the perks and benefits are always shouted about the loudest, but whilst a free fruit bowl or ‘Pizza Friday’s’, are lovely, these should not be at a cost of proper wellbeing benefits. Introducing benefits such as flexible working policies are a great way to support employee’s mental health. Offering options like remote working and the ability to work flexibly around your own life allows for a much better work/life balance, helping to remove the stresses related to commuting, childcare or other personal commitments.

Promoting a culture of care

Open and transparent communication is a vital part of a creating a caring culture in the workplace. Regular check-ins between team members, even informally, provides a great opportunity to discuss workloads, concerns and potential challenges. With the end result being that they feel supported and listened to, and some form of a resolution identified to manage their concerns.

Prioritising mental health in a PR agency is not only beneficial for the morale of the team but also a strategic investment in the success of the business. As the industry continues to evolve, a focus on mental health will undoubtably be a key differentiator in creating a workplace where employees thrive both personally and professionally.

About this article

Read time:

4 minutes

Category:

B2B Marketing, B2B PR, Content we like, Life at Skout, Opinion

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