How to foster mental wellness in the workplace and boost performance

One of the biggest challenges in the workplace is employee burnout. Most of us are not strangers to stress and fatigue caused by work, but these have been made even more apparent with Covid-19. A recent report by job portal Indeed showed that 52 per cent of all workers are feeling burned out, 9% higher than pre-pandemic levels.

It comes as little surprise, then, that mental health in the workplace is one of the key issues that all organisations have to tackle. While work can be good for mental health, a poor working environment can lead to problems in the long run.

For example, harassment and bullying are both commonly reported problems, and lack of rest due to overwork is also harmful.

Fortunately, in recent times, there has been more emphasis placed on the importance of mental health in the workplace. This is partly due to the rise of work-from-home arrangements and the blurring of lines between individuals’ personal and professional lives. We see this in how China’s controversial ‘996’ culture — working from 9 am to 9 pm, six days a week — has come under fire for ruining work-life balance.

Also read: Finding product-market fit with the power of product analytics

For fast-growing startups that are pursuing growth, this is even more crucial.

While there is nothing wrong with striving for speedy and exponential expansion, steps must be taken to prevent employees from burning out. Both employees and leaders must take active roles in ensuring the overall mental wellbeing of the organisation.

This is why corporate wellness platform Mindfi held a webinar addressing this specific issue on 13 August 2021, 1-2 pm SGT. Titled “Startup Success: Building your team’s mental wellbeing“, the webinar had three prolific panellists who shared their thoughts on mental wellbeing on both personal and professional levels.

The panellists were:

  • Anita Sadasivan, chief wellbeing officer at MindFi
  • Jeffrey Tiong, chief executive officer (CEO) and founder of innovation intelligence platform, Patsnap
  • Michelle Alphonso, CEO and co-founder of cloud computing consulting company, PointStar Consulting

The webinar was moderated by Mohan Belani, CEO of e27.

Exacerbated by COVID-19, mental wellbeing takes a front seat

Before diving into the organisational level, the webinar kicked off with each panellist sharing their personal challenges with mental wellbeing and what approach they took to address these challenges.

As a mother of two very young children, Michelle had to take care of her family while managing many organisational changes within PointStar.

“The last year, we had a lot of changes to make because of the Covid-19 situation,” she said. “So I think it was all piling up.”

However, she found that creating clear boundaries between work and home helped her deal with the stress. Every month, she also finds time to step back and take stock of what is happening in her life.

Both Jeffrey and Anita shared their stress management tips as well. As the founder of a startup that recently achieved unicorn status, Jeffrey is no stranger to stress and finds time to exercise and get enough sleep in order to alleviate it. For Anita, she engages in a daily gratitude practice at the end of each day and tries to do a different activity every weekend, like going to the museum.

The discussion then moved toward mental wellbeing on the organisation level.

Michelle shared that while issues surrounding mental health in her company had always been around, they were never brought to the surface nor obvious to management until Covid-19 struck. With lockdowns and work-from-home as the norm, on top of company expansion, she noticed that stress was escalating among employees.

Her trigger point, she said, was when she found out that three of her staff had sought professional help for depression and anxiety without her knowing. This incident led her to take mental health much more seriously.

Jeffrey echoed Michelle’s points, citing Covid-19 as a key reason for employees’ mental health deteriorating. For example, some of his staff had to deal with loved ones passing away.

Once he realised that mental health had to be addressed, Jeffrey started putting measures in place. They started by engaging speakers to share about mental wellbeing and launching an open hotline so that those who need help have a channel to turn to.

Also read: Connect with these X-PITCH 2021 startups through e27 Pro

Similarly, Michelle put programmes in place for her staff at PointStar. For example, the company started using Mindfi to keep track of employees’ mental health in an anonymous way, which made them feel safe and more comfortable sharing about their wellbeing. Employees also went for anagram training to understand each other’s personality types, reducing friction between their working styles.

Anita affirmed that Jeffrey and Michelle’s experiences were not uncommon. The key, she said, is to ensure that there are preventive measures in place.

“Even if you are depressed or anxious, you can do early interventions,” she explains. “You address it early on, and it doesn’t escalate.”

Another key challenge that the panellists agreed on was fostering a culture of being open about mental wellbeing. People in the United States and Europe are generally more receptive to speaking about mental health compared to those in Asia.

Ultimately, both employers and employees have a part to play. For example, individuals can find what stress management activities work best for them, while companies can push for more awareness and education by organising talks and webinars that tackle the issue.

“At the end of the day, everybody needs to take responsibility for their own wellbeing, but organisations can help by giving them tools and resources,” says Anita.

Overall wellness as a key driver for performance

MindFi is a corporate mental health and wellness startup that aims to help enterprises build productive workspaces.

Specifically, it provides services like a dedicated app, analytics and recommendations for human resource teams, and learning and development masterclasses on topics like mindfulness, resilience, and teamwork.

MindFi strongly believes in making positive changes in people’s careers and everyday lives by helping them prioritise mental wellbeing through a variety of innovative methods. Ultimately, their mission is to empower people to achieve peak mental performance.

Among other initiatives, the team aims to generate impact by providing self-care recommendations, 24/7 guided support, and educational masterclasses held by their behavioural coaches.

For example, the MindFi app helps employees build sustainable habits, access video classes and audio courses on mindfulness, and track their progress. Employers can also implement a ‘mind challenge’ for employees to clock ‘wellness minutes’ by completing exercises on the MindFi app.

Also read: Gearing up for the new normal: What do VCs want and how can startups ace their funding applications

MindFi’s latest initiative, the webinar ‘Startup Success: Building your team’s mental wellbeing’, complements the company’s overall mission of building a strong culture of mental health support in corporations.

The company recently secured US$750,000 in a pre-seed fundraise that includes investors such as iGlobe Partners and M Venture Partners and was selected for Y Combinator’s Summer 2021 programme. They have also onboarded Erica Johnson, co-founder of unicorn startup Modern Health, as an executive adviser to accelerate the company’s growth in Asia-Pacific.

From February to August this year, MindFi has tripled its headcount and customer base. The company boasts more than 30 enterprise clients throughout Asia and 68 per cent of employees have reported improved mental wellbeing within one month of using MindFi’s app.

For more information regarding the event and other similar projects being spearheaded by MindFi, visit https://www.mindfi.co/ and watch the full webinar here.

– –

This article is produced by the e27 team, sponsored by MindFi

We can share your story at e27, too. Engage the Southeast Asian tech ecosystem by bringing your story to the world. Visit us at e27.co/advertise to get started.

The post How to foster mental wellness in the workplace and boost performance appeared first on e27.

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One of the biggest challenges in the workplace is employee burnout. Most of us are not strangers to stress and fatigue caused by work, but these have been made even more apparent with Covid-19. A recent report by job portal Indeed showed that 52 per cent of all workers are feeling burned out, 9% higher than pre-pandemic levels.

It comes as little surprise, then, that mental health in the workplace is one of the key issues that all organisations have to tackle. While work can be good for mental health, a poor working environment can lead to problems in the long run.

For example, harassment and bullying are both commonly reported problems, and lack of rest due to overwork is also harmful.

Fortunately, in recent times, there has been more emphasis placed on the importance of mental health in the workplace. This is partly due to the rise of work-from-home arrangements and the blurring of lines between individuals’ personal and professional lives. We see this in how China’s controversial ‘996’ culture — working from 9 am to 9 pm, six days a week — has come under fire for ruining work-life balance.

Also read: Finding product-market fit with the power of product analytics

For fast-growing startups that are pursuing growth, this is even more crucial.

While there is nothing wrong with striving for speedy and exponential expansion, steps must be taken to prevent employees from burning out. Both employees and leaders must take active roles in ensuring the overall mental wellbeing of the organisation.

This is why corporate wellness platform Mindfi held a webinar addressing this specific issue on 13 August 2021, 1-2 pm SGT. Titled “Startup Success: Building your team’s mental wellbeing“, the webinar had three prolific panellists who shared their thoughts on mental wellbeing on both personal and professional levels.

The panellists were:

  • Anita Sadasivan, chief wellbeing officer at MindFi
  • Jeffrey Tiong, chief executive officer (CEO) and founder of innovation intelligence platform, Patsnap
  • Michelle Alphonso, CEO and co-founder of cloud computing consulting company, PointStar Consulting

The webinar was moderated by Mohan Belani, CEO of e27.

Exacerbated by COVID-19, mental wellbeing takes a front seat

Before diving into the organisational level, the webinar kicked off with each panellist sharing their personal challenges with mental wellbeing and what approach they took to address these challenges.

As a mother of two very young children, Michelle had to take care of her family while managing many organisational changes within PointStar.

“The last year, we had a lot of changes to make because of the Covid-19 situation,” she said. “So I think it was all piling up.”

However, she found that creating clear boundaries between work and home helped her deal with the stress. Every month, she also finds time to step back and take stock of what is happening in her life.

Both Jeffrey and Anita shared their stress management tips as well. As the founder of a startup that recently achieved unicorn status, Jeffrey is no stranger to stress and finds time to exercise and get enough sleep in order to alleviate it. For Anita, she engages in a daily gratitude practice at the end of each day and tries to do a different activity every weekend, like going to the museum.

The discussion then moved toward mental wellbeing on the organisation level.

Michelle shared that while issues surrounding mental health in her company had always been around, they were never brought to the surface nor obvious to management until Covid-19 struck. With lockdowns and work-from-home as the norm, on top of company expansion, she noticed that stress was escalating among employees.

Her trigger point, she said, was when she found out that three of her staff had sought professional help for depression and anxiety without her knowing. This incident led her to take mental health much more seriously.

Jeffrey echoed Michelle’s points, citing Covid-19 as a key reason for employees’ mental health deteriorating. For example, some of his staff had to deal with loved ones passing away.

Once he realised that mental health had to be addressed, Jeffrey started putting measures in place. They started by engaging speakers to share about mental wellbeing and launching an open hotline so that those who need help have a channel to turn to.

Also read: Connect with these X-PITCH 2021 startups through e27 Pro

Similarly, Michelle put programmes in place for her staff at PointStar. For example, the company started using Mindfi to keep track of employees’ mental health in an anonymous way, which made them feel safe and more comfortable sharing about their wellbeing. Employees also went for anagram training to understand each other’s personality types, reducing friction between their working styles.

Anita affirmed that Jeffrey and Michelle’s experiences were not uncommon. The key, she said, is to ensure that there are preventive measures in place.

“Even if you are depressed or anxious, you can do early interventions,” she explains. “You address it early on, and it doesn’t escalate.”

Another key challenge that the panellists agreed on was fostering a culture of being open about mental wellbeing. People in the United States and Europe are generally more receptive to speaking about mental health compared to those in Asia.

Ultimately, both employers and employees have a part to play. For example, individuals can find what stress management activities work best for them, while companies can push for more awareness and education by organising talks and webinars that tackle the issue.

“At the end of the day, everybody needs to take responsibility for their own wellbeing, but organisations can help by giving them tools and resources,” says Anita.

Overall wellness as a key driver for performance

MindFi is a corporate mental health and wellness startup that aims to help enterprises build productive workspaces.

Specifically, it provides services like a dedicated app, analytics and recommendations for human resource teams, and learning and development masterclasses on topics like mindfulness, resilience, and teamwork.

MindFi strongly believes in making positive changes in people’s careers and everyday lives by helping them prioritise mental wellbeing through a variety of innovative methods. Ultimately, their mission is to empower people to achieve peak mental performance.

Among other initiatives, the team aims to generate impact by providing self-care recommendations, 24/7 guided support, and educational masterclasses held by their behavioural coaches.

For example, the MindFi app helps employees build sustainable habits, access video classes and audio courses on mindfulness, and track their progress. Employers can also implement a ‘mind challenge’ for employees to clock ‘wellness minutes’ by completing exercises on the MindFi app.

Also read: Gearing up for the new normal: What do VCs want and how can startups ace their funding applications

MindFi’s latest initiative, the webinar ‘Startup Success: Building your team’s mental wellbeing’, complements the company’s overall mission of building a strong culture of mental health support in corporations.

The company recently secured US$750,000 in a pre-seed fundraise that includes investors such as iGlobe Partners and M Venture Partners and was selected for Y Combinator’s Summer 2021 programme. They have also onboarded Erica Johnson, co-founder of unicorn startup Modern Health, as an executive adviser to accelerate the company’s growth in Asia-Pacific.

From February to August this year, MindFi has tripled its headcount and customer base. The company boasts more than 30 enterprise clients throughout Asia and 68 per cent of employees have reported improved mental wellbeing within one month of using MindFi’s app.

For more information regarding the event and other similar projects being spearheaded by MindFi, visit https://www.mindfi.co/ and watch the full webinar here.

– –

This article is produced by the e27 team, sponsored by MindFi

We can share your story at e27, too. Engage the Southeast Asian tech ecosystem by bringing your story to the world. Visit us at e27.co/advertise to get started.

The post How to foster mental wellness in the workplace and boost performance appeared first on e27.

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