Protecting Our Mental Health
At Halo we know a happy fulfilled team can achieve anything. When we ran our first culture audit with Happy HQ in 2021 one of the key areas flagged by our staff was the subject of mental health.
Nearly everyone in the company rated themselves as having very good / excellent general health and well being (both inside and outside of work) which is great, but we are aware that this needs to be nurtured and maintained, particularly during times when we are busy.
Our results showed that mental health isn’t as openly discussed as people would like, with only 42% agreeing that it’s widely discussed. The team also often referred to the working environment as being pressured. With our work centred around events there is often an extra time pressure.
Onsite we have a very male dominated team and we spoke a lot about some of the stigma around mental health and the difficulties some people find in opening up. A positive stock response can often be used to close down a conversation, when really lots could be going on that are negatively affecting a person’s mental health.
Actions we put in place
As a management team we put in place initiatives to help raise awareness and collectively support our mental health at work
- Mental First Aid Aiders – We put three members of the team through formal training so they are better equipped to look out for signs of anxiety or stress in their colleagues both in the office and onsite.
- Encouraged the conversation – Leaders openly sharing their mental health struggles and coping techniques to facilitate an open dialogue with colleagues.
- Raised awareness – use our quarterly Halo Highlights to include workshops on practical things to support mental health. For example we incorporated a breathwork session as a full team.
- Encouraged use of Vitality Healthcare Therapy – as part of our company health insurance we have access to a mental Health package which gives the team access to in person therapy sessions and support. Those who have taken it up found it really useful to talk to a qualified mental health specialist.
- Explored ways to find headspace – we have encouraged people to find their flow time during the day and looked at how we schedule meetings and respect people’s diaries.
- Signed up to the Mental Health Charter – as leaders this gives us support and ideas on what more we can do to proactively support the team.
In our 2023 culture audit 94% of people said mental health is openly discussed and supported and that they have a frequent check in with someone in the team on how they are feeling. It’s brilliant that we have seen an improvement and the team are feeling more supported, however there is still lots we can work on to continue to safeguard the health and wellbeing of the team.
Going forward: From the 2023 audit we will be discussing how we can make sure we take more breaks and get outside more in the working day and embed practices on diary management we have set so we can all have some more headspace and flow time.
Most importantly we understand that Mental Health is a continuum, not something that is fixed and forgotten. We will continue the conversations to improve our practices, maintaining a healthy working environment where people feel supported and heard.