We all have a responsibility to provide a safe and fair workplace for our employees. Creating a mentally healthy Practice has benefits for both the Principal Dentist, the employees and the patients!
A mentally healthy practice should support the mental health of the individual and the team as a whole. This should then lead to increased employee engagement, improved productivity and reduced absenteeism.
But how do we do this? There are many different ways to promote mental health in the workplace, here are just a few:
Smart role design
- Involve staff in deciding how work is performed.
- Listen to your employees and their ideas on how to complete their tasks.
- Be conscious of each person’s workload…including your own!
- Where possible allow flexible working hours.
- Ensure the physical environment of the practice is safe, reassuring and welcoming for staff and patients.
Encourage personal resilience
- Encourage regular physical activity opportunities
- Encourage mentoring and coaching
Your Practice Culture
- Don’t put off conversations…even the difficult ones! Make time to speak with all of your team on a regular basis, particularly if there are any who may have some concerns.
- Encourage everyone on the team to look out for each other
- Ensure all employees are contributing to a safe and positive practice
- Implement a mental health policy ensuring all understand that there is no tolerance for bullying and discrimination.
- Provide access to mental health information. (see links below)
- Participate in events like World Mental Health Day and RU OK? Day.
- Provide yourself and the Practice Manager with support and training on how to support any in your team recovering from mental illness and stressful life events.
- Be open to discussing and modifying duties and work schedules when appropriate.
- Provide a supportive environment and ensure no discrimination or bullying occurs.
- Encourage your employees to seek help early.
- Be aware and notice any changes…ask RUOK?
In addition, Prime Practice’s Leadership Essentials Workshop will assist you (and your Practice Manager) with improving your skills. Of course your business coach and Prime Practice HR Solutions are also available to assist.
Prime Practice is here to support you and your team in achieving success. Let’s start 2020 with a mentally healthy practice culture!
There are many associations providing assistance and support for mental health, here are just a few.
|Beyond Blue||Support for people experiencing depression and anxiety https://www.beyondblue.org.au/||1300 22 4636|
|The MindSpot Clinic||Support for people experiencing stress, anxiety, low mood or depression||1800 61 44 34|
|eheadspace||Mental health support for people under 25https://headspace.org.au/||1800 650 890|
|MensLine Australia||Mental health support for men https://mensline.org.au/||1300 78 99 78|
|Qlife||Mental health support for LGBTI people https://qlife.org.au/||1800 184 527|
|Lifeline||Crisis support and suicide prevention||13 11 14|
|Suicide Call Back Service||Support for people feeling suicidal||1300 659 467|
|SANE Australia||Support, training and education for people with a mental illness https://www.sane.org/||1800 18 7263|
|RUOK?||Suicide prevention, reminding people that having meaningful conversations with mates and loved ones could save lives. https://www.ruok.org.au/|