With minority rights gaining importance in the past few years, it has become important for organizations to adopt and inculcate DEI into their culture. Thus, DEI, i.e., diversity, equity, and inclusion, is now a core value for building and defining a progressive and modern organization’s culture.
Role of DEI in Building a Positive Workplace Culture
The purpose of adopting and implementing DEI is to make employees feel that they belong. As an organizational value, diversity promotes hiring people of all ages, genders, cultures, religions, etc. Inclusion encourages hearing the thoughts and opinions of the varied workforce. Finally, equity fosters equal opportunities and power among diverse employees to further inclusion.
The DEI values, i.e., the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion, are interdependent, meaning that one cannot be implemented without the other two. Moreover, multiple factors ensure the smooth implementation and execution of DEI values in a positive workplace culture. One of these important factors is mental health in the workplace.
Mental Health – A Key Point in DEI Conversation
Unfortunately, discussing mental health in the workplace is often pushed aside or suppressed. But no DEI conversation is complete without making mental health a key discussion component. Here are three reasons why mental health in the workplace should be a part of every DEI conversation:
1. Mental Health Discussion Is Key to Inclusion
A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report states that twenty percent of American struggle with mental health issues, including anxiety, depression, and PTSD, at some point in their lives. The report also states that four percent of all Americans suffer from serious mental health issues, including bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, which can hinder their everyday life. On the other hand, the World Health Organization (WHO) reports the prevalence of mental health issues worldwide to be over ten percent.
The above stats conclude that almost every organization employs those who either suffer from mental health issues or are closely related to someone who suffers from mental health issues. Thus, a conversation on inclusivity cannot be completed without acknowledging those who suffer from mental health issues.
2. Discussing Mental Health Is Essential to Implement Diversity.
Discussing mental health at the workplace is important to practice diversity as it is common for most minority groups to have suffered from, or still suffer from, systematic oppression and biasedness in society. The biasedness makes highlighting their voices important to bring about a positive societal change, starting from the workplace, by truly including them as crucial human resources found through recruitment consultant NY.
Employees belonging to these minority groups are also likely to work despite suffering from mental health issues considered disabilities, such as depression, borderline personality disorder, etc. Thus, making these employees feel welcomed at the workplace cannot be achieved without mentioning mental health.
3. Mental Health Discussion Discourages Biasedness
Mental health issues, despite their prevalence, are still treated as taboo in many cultures, religions, or communities. Employees belonging to such communities who have never faced mental health issues may act toward others with unconscious bias. They can also act aggressively, intentionally or unintentionally, make inappropriate jokes, or use inappropriate or demeaning terms. All these actions can cause significant stress to employees who suffer from mental health issues or have suffered from them in the past.
Discussing mental health in the workplace allows employees who have never experienced mental health issues themselves or among their loved ones an insight into the struggles they bring. It increases awareness about mental health problems and their impact. Understanding the reality and severity of mental health issues allows employees previously unaware to actively act against their internalized biases. A workplace culture that doesn’t promote biasedness can prove especially helpful to employees belonging to minority groups.
4. Mental Health Discussion Promotes Productivity
A workplace environment where employees do not face biasedness or discrimination upon their mental health, backgrounds, or personal choices fosters productivity and efficiency. It saves employees from unnecessary stressors, which can act as triggers for their mental health issues and worsen them.
On the other hand, knowing that their mental health issues are understood and catered to at the workplace allows employees to feel more comfortable. They can communicate to their managers if they require a day off for their mental health or if they need to be accommodated on feeling uncomfortable working with a particular client or coworker. These requests can allow their managers to handle the situation before it impacts the work negatively.
Discussing mental health at the workplace and ensuring its awareness and acceptance also allows employees from varied backgrounds to experience an equitable and inclusive work culture. They can recount their experiences and present their opinions accordingly. Employees from diverse backgrounds, found through candidate assessment service NY, can especially bring fresh and unique perspectives that can significantly benefit the organization.
5. Mental Health Discussion Ensures Employee Retention
Employees facing triggers for their mental health issues or biasedness for their background or identity at the workplace are not likely to stay with the organization for long. They may suffer in silence, which can keep them from working at their best potential. They may also speak up. However, a lack of action from the organization can result in disappointment and a wish to switch jobs for them.
On the other hand, a workplace where employees are truly taken care of and supported earns their loyalty. Employees will work harder and more passionately at a place where they don’t have to fight for their most fundamental rights, i.e., respect and acceptance for who they are. They also consistently keep up their performance to ensure they never give the organization a reason to fire them, as it can be challenging to find executive jobs with benefits.
Last but not least, diversity, equity, and inclusion practiced correctly at an organization create a highly positively competitive and driven environment. Employees know that working hard at such a workplace is worth the time, effort, and dedication, as they will surely receive their reward.
The best way to ensure acceptance of mental health in the workplace and implementation of DEI and other values it brings is to hire organizational leaders dedicated to the cause. Contact C-level Recruiting Companies In NY with a proven record of success stories like CCY to find leaders for your organization that are passionate about DEI and curating a positive workplace culture. CCY provides recruitment consultant ny with candidate assessment services so you can hire confidently. Contact them now.