by Shari Finnell, editor/writer, Not-for-profit News

The impact of mental health challenges in the workplace is becoming increasingly clear.

According to a recent survey by the American Psychological Association, 59 percent of all employees surveyed reported experiencing negative impacts of work-related stress in the previous month. Another international report calculated the financial toll of depression, anxiety, and stress on the global economy at $1 trillion.

Other studies point to similar patterns related to mental health:

  • 92 percent of employees said they experienced mental health challenges that impacted their work. — 2022 Workplace Survey
  • 76 percent of U.S. employees reported at least one symptom of a mental health condition. — Mind Share Partners
  • 84 percent of employees said that their workplace conditions contributed to a least one mental health condition — Mind Share Partners

These trends prompted our team at Not-for-profit News to dedicate two months of our weekly features to the topic of mental health. As the U.S. Surgeon General recently indicated in a new report, we believe employers will increasingly be at the forefront of addressing the mental health needs of Americans.

We have compiled a list of resources and articles published in May and June to support your work toward supporting the health and well-being of you and your employees. You can regularly visit Focus on Mental Health as a reference.

Some of the leading articles in this two-month series included the following:

Is your nonprofit suffering the effects of secondary trauma?
9 steps toward staff ‘self-care’ policies
New certification program encourages Indiana employers to develop more robust mental health initiatives
Mental health: The new leadership imperative
How fundraisers can get off the road to exhaustion and burnout
Nonprofit ramps up efforts to address Indiana’s mental health crisis

Here is a summary of some initiatives your nonprofit can consider when developing a mental health strategy for the workplace:

  • Create a culture of mental health awareness and support. Educate employees about mental health, provide resources and support, and create a safe and supportive environment where employees feel comfortable talking about mental health.
  • Offer mental health benefits. Ensure employees have access to mental health care, such as counseling and therapy. Consider providing paid time off for mental health days as a benefit.
  • Promote healthy work-life balance. If you haven’t already done so, introduce flexible work arrangements, such as telecommuting and flextime, if possible. Also, encourage employees to take their designated breaks and vacation time.
  • Address workplace stress. Take the time to identify sources of workplace stress, such as long hours, unrealistic expectations, and lack of support.
  • Support employees with mental health conditions. Provide accommodations and support for employees who are struggling with mental health conditions. Different options can include providing a quiet place to work, allowing for flexible work hours, and providing access to mental health care.