Mental Health at Work

Mental health in the workplace has never been more important. Here, we’d like to explore the possible signs of poor mental health and what organisations and employers can do to help any employees who may be struggling with theirs.

Mental illness is a very wide and complex subject and as such the signs are numerous. Here’s a list of just some of the signs to look out for, but it is by no means exhaustive:

  • Mood swings or changes
  • Being withdrawn and not wanting to talk
  • A fall in the general standard of work
  • Talking about death more than usual
  • Working long hours and not wanting to go home (could be a sign of a problem at home)
  • Increased absenteeism if the problem is work-based
  • Physical signs of self-harming (e.g. cuts/scratches)
  • Signs of alcohol or drug abuse

In order to help employees who may suffering with poor mental health, it is important that your business has a Mental Health First Aid action plan in place and that you know when it’s important to engage professional help externally.

Your Mental Health First Aid action plan should incorporate individuals at all levels being trained as Mental Health First Aiders on an approved training course. In addition, managers and senior managers should be trained to be aware of the action plan and it’s procedures, and to be approachable and to encourage open and non-judgemental conversations around the subject.

Mental Health First Aid training should encompass:

  • The signs of poor mental health to look for.
  • How to approach someone they suspect of suffering with their mental health
  • Gaining the confidence of the individual concerned
  • How to be reassuring and how to get the individual to open up
  • Recognising the signs of a serious risk of harm or suicide
  • Knowing when to escalate an issue within the organisation and / or engage professional help


For further help and advice, please do contact us and we can put you in touch with organisations who offer Mental Health at Work training.