At RLB, “People Count” is our way of life. We firmly believe that a happy and healthy team will provide the best service to our clients and communities. This is why we put such a strong emphasis on the well-being of our team members. In honour of Mental Health Week, we share the ways we have put our people and their mental health first.
#1- People Investment Officer
Our firm believes so strongly in putting people first that we have a person dedicated to the cause. Our People Investment Officer (PIO) takes the needs of our team into account and builds connections with them. They also empower our team to connect through a variety of programs and benefits.
#2- Employee and Family Assistance Program
We know that if you’re dealing with something at home or in your personal life, that doesn’t end when you log in to work each day. Emotional stress, familial problems, and other personal struggles weigh on you throughout the day and often limit your productivity and engagement. We equip our team members with access to an assistance program that includes mental health support but goes beyond that. Our program offers nutritional guidance, financial advice, relationship counselling and more.
#3- Mental Health First Aid
In 2019, we committed to making our teams’ mental health the highest priority by providing Mental Health First Aid training to a select group of team members. We chose members in various leadership roles from each of our locations. We connected them with a licensed Mental Health First Aid trainer. The result is a group of 12 team members specifically trained to deal with a mental health crisis that our team can turn to when they need support.
Our goal for Health and Wellness at RLB is to offer the resources and support our team needs in the way they need them. Not everyone is comfortable opening up to another team member. We feel that that shouldn’t be a barrier for them to receive the help they need. We built an internal website that team members can access to find helpful articles, podcasts, free supports and more. There are also links included to our Employee and Family Assistance Program on this site to allow our team to access the support while remaining anonymous.
#5- Physical Library
As mentioned above, we recognize that everyone learns or asks for help in their own way. This is why we built a physical library in a central location of our principal office. Team members have access to borrow any book they choose at any time. We included a list of available books on the internal website to allow team members from other office locations to see what is available. If they wish to borrow a book, we simply send it to them through our interoffice couriers, and they can return it at their leisure.
#6- Mindfulness App
One of our most recent additions to our support strategy was to offer access to a mindfulness app for our team. They now have access to meditations, sleep supports, nutritional information and more at the touch of a button. Subscription is once again discreet and allows the team to access the support they need in a way they might need it.
#7-Build a culture of empathy
We have invested a great deal of time into changing the narrative around mental health. By implementing these practices and programs, we have made it abundantly clear that we do not judge or shame anyone for the state of their mental health. We encourage communication when the individual feels comfortable sharing and respect those that wish to remain quiet. Consistent communication about programs and options continues to break down the stigma that surrounds mental illness.
#8- Think about wellness, not just health
At RLB, we offer our team “personal days” instead of sick days, and we urge our team to use them. We strongly believe that our team knows what is best for them and allow them to make appropriate choices as they need. Suppose a team member has a cold, flu or other physical ailments that prevent them from working at their best. In that case, we expect them to stay home, recover and limit the potential spread. We believe the same should be valid for emotional ailments. Suppose you are feeling burnt out or are having a challenging mental health day. In that case, we encourage you to take a personal day and reduce the risk of burnout or affecting your team with your less-than-peppy demeanour. How you use your personal days are just that… personal.
#9- Make it collaborative
None of us are mind readers. We are happy to support the people that matter most, but we won’t always know what they need. RLB encourages team members to share their feedback on programs we introduce and strive to meet their needs. We have periodically sent out surveys requesting feedback and consistently remind our team that they can come to us with ideas or concerns. If our goal is to help the team, we should be open to making the changes that suit their needs.
#10- Don’t stop learning
Mental health and wellness supports continue to evolve every day. Continue to research and learn as much as you can about the newest forms of mental health and wellness support. Be willing to implement new ideas and make changes. As your team grows and evolves, so should your programs. Be flexible and open-minded in your approach, and always, always put your people first.