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Employee Mental Health Program Ideas for Leaders

Mar 12, 2021

Mental Smiling patient standing and telling her problems during therapy group session-1 health problems directly impact employers and businesses through increased employee absenteeism, reduced productivity and profits, poor morale, and an increased costs to fix these problems.

To combat these issues, many companies have adopted wellness and mental health programs as a way to attract top talent, keep employees happy and productive, and decrease employee turnover. And as a leader at your company, you can encourage positive mental health in your workplace.

To help you think about the ways you can encourage positive mental health, here are some mental health program ideas and activities to consider implementing at your company.

20 employee mental health program ideas & tips

Try incorporating some of these ideas and tips into your employee mental health program:

  1.  Encourage open conversation about mental illness 
  2.  Establish a wellness committee or mental health advisor
  3.  Celebrate "Wellness Wednesdays" in some small way every week
  4.  Offer high-quality snacks at the office, or create a healthy office cookbook
  5.  Send out a monthly wellness newsletter with tips and support options
  6.  Offer standing desks as an option to encourage movement
  7.  Incentivize smoking cessation and other healthy initiatives 
  8.  Conduct periodic surveys to gauge employee happiness and engagement at work
  9.  Provide counseling support for all employees
  10.  Encourage employees to use their PTO when they need it
  11.  Give employees a day off on their birthday
  12.  Schedule a daily recess so everyone gets away from their desk
  13.  Institute shortened days during summer months—but look for ways to also streamline the workload; otherwise, your team will simply have to get more done in less time
  14.  Make your office pet friendly 
  15.  Offer maternity and paternity leave
  16.  Mandate rest areas or no-work zones where employees can decompress
  17.  Create flexible work hours and remote working opportunities
  18.  Offer unlimited vacation time—on the honor system, of course
  19.  Ensure that health insurance plans are also mental-health friendly
  20.  Implement an employee assistance program

15 employee mental health activities

Consider adding some of these activities into your employee mental health program:

  1.  Volunteer at an animal shelter for a day
  2.  Have a volunteer day at nonprofit of employees' choice
  3.  Practice on-site stretching to help relieve stress
  4.  Host a virtual wellness retreat
  5.  Organize a planting or gardening project at your office
  6.  Participate in bring your pet to work day
  7.  Have a movie day where you take your entire office to the theater to unwind 
  8.  Hire a chef to teach employees an easy cooking recipe
  9.  Reward your team with on-site chair massages
  10.  Host en employee field day with fun activities followed by a healthy dinner
  11.  Book a comedian for your next large staff meeting or event
  12.  Join a local sports league as a company team
  13.  Host a guided meditation
  14.  Hold a lunch-and-learn session on mental health awareness
  15.  Invite a mental health or motivational speaker to you office for the day

Learn more about developing employee mental health programs for your organization

If you're a business owner, manager or organizational leader, employee mental health really has to start with you. Whether you are struggling to implement an employee mental health program or you just want to improve overall wellness at your company, I encourage you to reach out to me today. Together, we'll determine how I can best help you, your company and your employees enjoy increased productivity and better mental health!

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