In addition to Jen, the panel included:
- Chris Rainey | CEO & Co-Founder at HR Leaders
- Alban Jacquin | Vice President Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Well-Being at Schneider Electric
- Nita Cumello | Director of Well-Being, Global Large Law at Thomson Reuters
- Joe Grasso, PH.D. | Senior Director of Workforce Transformation at Lyra Health
- Jill Johnson | Director of Well-Being at GDIT (General Dynamics Information Technology)
Throughout the session, the panelists shared their personal well-being experiences and how organizations can incorporate well-being solutions to champion workplace mental health.
Here are a few key topics they discussed:
Prioritization of health
The group began by sharing personal anecdotes of how they’ve had to prioritize their health throughout the pandemic. For some, it was a wake-up call to put themselves first, and for others, it was about maintaining a positive balance. They all agreed that it’s not easy to put yourselves first but having a great support system helps hold you accountable.
Nita shared three non-negotiables that she incorporates into her daily experience. She must “Move her body, learn something new and be with the people that light me up, family and friends, who inspire me every day.”
For Jen, her daily experience includes walking. “I have a great support system at work. There’s three of us that walk and talk every morning. We’ve become very competitive. If we can’t walk, we all feel the frustration. You have to do something and keep moving.” – Jen Mahone-Rightler
Mental health programming
The panelists shared how having the right trainings and programming focused on mental health is key. Many organizations are trying to figure out how best to incorporate mental health and well-being trainings into their plans.
As Joe said, “More is being asked of managers as they need to set a tone for the team.” It’s important for managers to complete these trainings and to recognize when their employees aren’t okay.
How to make mental well-being a priority at the leadership level
According to Jen, “We have to be accountable as leaders to make it happen and get to a place where we are humanizing our individuals.”
The group discussed the importance of incorporating mental health in the future of work and they shared different ways that their companies make sure it is a priority. From Epsilon’s Days of Rest to encouraging PTO, the steps companies take need to be sustainable and actionable.
It’s important that mental well-being is recognized, but leaders need to have a strategic plan in place to weave these practices in, make time for conversations, and create the right balance. With this, Epsilon places an emphasis on its culture to ensure that it is focusing on the wellness of its employees.
“Executive buy in is necessary to set a company priority. When companies prioritize mental health, everyone wins. Managers win because they have a higher performing team and individuals win because they are working in an environment with people who care.” – Joe Grasso
Mental well-being is continuously being discussed which shows how important it is to the workforce. Watch the full session here to learn more and hear what else the panelists had to say.
October also holds World Mental Health Day on October 10, an international day for mental health awareness, education and advocacy against social stigma. Read more here about what Epsilon does for its employees when it comes to putting people first and well-being.