Lisa Warner, Out of Home Foodservice Controller at pladis, discusses the importance of looking after the mental health of your care workforce.
As they say, to look after someone you need to make sure you’re taken care of too. This is particularly important for care home professionals.
Research shows that one in four people in the UK experience mental health problems each yeari, proving mental health has a daily impact on people from all walks of life. Within hospitality, four out of five professionals say their stress levels have increased in the past three years, yet over half (56%) don’t make employers aware of their mental health issues.ii
In a care setting, hospitality professionals are likely to witness physical and mental health challenges every single day. As a result, prioritising their own wellbeing can often come as an afterthought.
As the UK’s fourth largest employer, the hospitality industry has an opportunity to make a real difference to the wellbeing of its employees. After all, successful organisations are built on happy, productive teams. So, what can employers do?
A lot has been done to raise awareness of widespread mental health challenges amongst hospitality professionals. At pladis, we think more active conversations need to happen to break down the stigma of mental health and explain the help available. Our aim is to share real stories and signpost the industry to where this support can be found.
We’ve teamed up with Hospitality Action to sponsor its new Mental Health Campaign, and in the coming months we’re opening up conversations around mental health with a range of initiatives to raise awareness of wellbeing in the hospitality industry.
We’re launching a series of videos telling the stories behind the smiles of workers across the hospitality industry. These films will picture real hospitality employees who have suffered with mental health issues, but found that talking through their difficulties with colleagues, friends, family and Hospitality Action really helped.
We will be inviting the industry to sit down and have a chat over a cuppa and a biscuit on our Happiness Couch to learn more about where they can receive support or help employees. They will also be asked to share their views on mental health, answering questions and sparking further conversations on social media.
We’re keen to create change and start more conversations around mental health, for care home hospitality professionals through to travel hospitality and so on. A brew, a biscuit and a chat is a great way to start.
Sources: iMind, 2017; iiHospitality Action, 2018.