The landscaping industry predominantly employs males and whilst the stereotype of macho male ‘tradies’ being tough prevails, as an industry we can be a conduit for change. Your business productivity and bottom line will be affected by workers who may be struggling with mental health issues and you may not even be aware of it. Five out of seven suicides are men and the number of men with depression is 4.5 times the size of the grand final crowd at the MCG. It’s time to man up; stop being ‘blokes’ and talk about it!
Small landscape businesses are in the unique position due to close connections with their staff – working with them on a daily basis enables you to notice changes in behaviour or attitudes and allow you to ask the question – “Are you feeling OK?”
Larger landscaping operations may have a Human Resources manager or other personnel position and systems should be in place to have regular informal chats with staff, possibly by a supervisor to ensure you are doing what you can to assist your employees general wellbeing. It will pay dividends cementing your business as an “Employer of Choice”.
According to the World Health Organization, depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide. Common mental health conditions like depression and anxiety may be experienced by business managers or their staff, and can impact on business performance.
Check out this return on investment (roi) interactive tool which helps businesses to understand the importance of creating a mentally healthy workplace – choose construction industry from the drop down box and the size of your workforce.
Take a look at 10 things you can do to make your workplace mentally healthy small businesses & medium/large businesses. And for more information visit learn.beyondblue-elearning.org.au/businessinmind/#/managing-mental-health-in-the-workplace/s2_7
Perhaps you’ve see the adverts on TV for “Man Therapy”. Visit their website to find some great tongue in cheek videos, mental health facts and a mind quiz to help you or your staff work through how they presently feel delivered by Davo the tradie to help you sort yourself out. http://www.mantherapy.org.au/
Your business could consider implementing the Beyond Blue National Workplace Program which focuses on how to recognise when a work colleague may be experiencing depression or anxiety, how to support someone to get help and good management strategies such as return-to-work plans and making adjustments in the workplace. https://www.beyondblue.org.au/about-us/programs/workplace-and-workforce-program/programs-resources-and-tools/national-workplace-program#RW51_a1
Beyond Blue also offers Workplace Online a series of free online resources to raise awareness of depression and anxiety in the workplace and provide practical strategies to support individuals and promote mental health in the workplace.
Access the free program at https://www.beyondblue.org.au/about-us/programs/workplace-and-workforce-program/programs-resources-and-tools/workplace-online
Assistance for your staff is also available on line at http://www.mantherapy.org.au/man-therapies/online-therapies
Some of your workers may be feeling stressed or under pressure simply because of the modern workday environment. This work related stress and the risks (‘psychosocial’ risks) such as bullying, occupational violence and fatigue that cause it, can have a profound impact on employers, employees, their colleagues and families.
Under current WHS legislation employers and managers have a responsibility to ensure (amongst other things) employees’ psychosocial safety whilst at work. Psychosocial risks include bullying, harassment, occupational violence, unreasonable job demands, job control/autonomy and job insecurity.
To understand more about this topic and an example of 5 steps your business can consider when establishing a risk management process to prevent and respond to psychosocial risks
take a look at this factsheet.
There are lots of organisations offering support, counselling and assistance to anyone needing it - you just need to know where to look:-
Edition 14 - Workplace Wellness: Let's Talk About It! Mental Health & Wellbeing
Landscape Queensland is working with Workplace Health and Safety Queensland on a Healthy Workers Initiative as part of the Queensland Government's Healthier.Happier.Workplaces.Initiative.
Some of the above information is reproduced from