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The time is right – Mental Health and Wellbeing in times of crisis

Tucker Stone recently hosted a webinar in partnership with the Mental health & wellbeing platform 87%. We are delighted to share a synopsis of the discussion with you..

  1. The panel discussed what society and business has faced and faces during these unprecedented times.
  2. The pandemic has brought into stark relief what was already a mental wellbeing crisis facing business and society.
  3. This crisis is set to accelerate as the post Covid stress disorders emerge, destabilising employees, undermining relationships and decreasing productivity.
  4. Responsible business has a duty to itself (productivity) to invest in the wellbeing of its staff and indeed perhaps as well those who had been made redundant and even their families

Richard Glynn, Chairman & Founder of mental health data and insights company 87% opened the webinar discussing some topical themes as follows;

  1. The critical need for business to use. data insight as the fundamental basis for wellbeing. Without data insight any wellbeing policy was acting blind;
  2. The Deloitte Monitor Report showed the return on PREVENTATIVE AND PROACTIVE investment into workplace mental health interventions is overwhelmingly positive, with an average ROI of 4.2:1
  3. Trust between the employer and employee, especially when personal data is involved is critical.
  4. There remains a stigma surrounding mental wellbeing where mental health is still seen as illness compared with physical health which is seen as a positive.
  5. Employees can easily turn off notifications to restrict data. Business needs to earn the trust of employees by investing in their wellbeing. This is the “value exchange”
  6. Investing in employee wellbeing was resonant of the approach adopted by 19th century philanthropists. The re connection between workers and employers, based on a data and value exchange, in return for an investment in their wellbeing was needed to reposition business as authentic and sustainable for a new society. This digital exchange was effectively digital Philanthrocapitalism (“PC 2.0”)

Some key data insight findings from 87% during this time are….

  • 48% of users felt isolated during the crisis
  • 42% of users said they want more emotional support
  • 19% of users said their teams hadn’t adapted well to lockdown
  • A steady decrease in work satisfaction has been recorded from January 2020, up until the present day
  • Different cohorts appeared affected in different ways – For example, women employees exhibited accentuated levels of decreased self-confidence and heightened anxiety. They also projected higher level of financial uncertainty
  • However encouragingly, after 3 months of using the 87% platform. Employees exhibited a 17%-20% decrease in anxiety, and an equal improvement in happiness and emotional awareness levels

Some key takeaways from our panellists:

Candice Cross, Global Head of Leadership, Talent and Performance at InterContinental Hotels Group

  • InterContinental Hotels Group had a growth focused strategy in 2019, which very quickly developed into a survival strategy in 2020, what with the number of empty hotels on a global scale which led to huge amounts of anxiety.
  • An internal ‘Global Learning Summit’ was held internally, advising employees about flexible working, leading remotely and engaging teams in a bid to prepare people for working throughout the crisis.
  • InterContinental Hotels Group’s current focus is now looking at how to use COVID-19 to refocus on employee wellbeing and mental health to accelerate overall recovery.
  • Mental health is being entirely incorporated into the People strategy at InterContinental Hotels Group going forward.
  • InterContinental Hotels Group are spending a lot of time engaging and listening their employees to bring about real and sustainable change.
  • There was an acknowledgement that data insight and measurement to guide further action was required

John Dean, Founder of Punter Southall, Director Howdens, Founder of Ponte Visum Associates

  • There is a lot of potential for companies to show real support for their employees at this current time.
  • There are many challenges that companies face. Having access to a platform that indicates poor, medium or positive mood within your workforce was greatly beneficially when understanding the needs of your people. Determining gender, demographic and other deep dives into the data of your workforce can determine what EAP system works best.
  • The tailored support determined from the data collected can then triage people based on what support they need.
  • Companies currently spent a lot of money providing support. What was needed was a better way of signposting the correct employees to the correct services and the correct time.
  • All the mental health support on offer to companies, e.g. Mental Health Champions, Medical Insurance, Occupational Health and EAPs would ideally be housed on a single data driven hub containing everything needed for your workforce and their wellbeing.

Hugo Tucker, MD and Founder of Tucker Stone

  • As policy is eased and we are given the opportunity to return to work, how employers engage and transition that return back to work will be testament to how much they understand their workforce and wellbeing.
  • The People function in any business is more important than ever and will redefine and implement the new ecosystem of work.
  • The People Data & Analytics area within HR is now a crucial part of the operation rather than a nice to have. All decisions should be based on data and evidence, especially in these unchartered times.
  • CPOs need to work with their peers to establish a commercial but safe and supportive environment, both physically and mentally.
  • Adapting Executive Search
    • Client: During the crisis, we have found that clients are putting even more emphasis on HR – particularly around mental health and diversity. CEOs are asking whether HR is fit for purpose for the change ahead. The question being, how to appoint to the C-Suite virtually and whether they have the courage to do so.
    • Candidate: With fewer opportunities and a candidate buoyant market, competition is fierce which means our work with unsuccessful candidates is one of the most important roles we play in the process.

Conclusion

87% is passionate about mental wellbeing and engaging with employees in a private and personal way that allows them to understand measure and improve our own wellbeing. Businesses need to accept this as a basic operational need that drives productivity and engagement. It is highly cost effective. In return for this investment business receives aggregated anonymised data to support, focus and monitor its investment into its people. The platform segments users by need and signposts them to appropriate services.

87% is committed to accentuating this value exchange in the workplace through data insight.

If you are interested in finding out more about 87% and what it could offer your business, please contact us directly at info@tuckerstone.co.uk and we will happily introduce you.

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