This year's Mental Health Day theme was "Make mental health and wellbeing for all a global priority". It was music to my ears.
According to this year’s Deloitte’s Women at Work survey of 5000 women across 10 countries:
One third have taken time off work because of mental health challenges in the workplace....
Yet only 43% feel comfortable talking about these challenges in the workplace.
That’s a lot of isolated, unhappy and exhausted women. It’s no wonder more than half also said they were planning on leaving their job within two years.
The Great Resignation is real.
The survey also found that organisations that foster a respectful and inclusive culture gain higher levels of employee motivation, productivity and retention.
Women want to work in inclusive organisations. They want to feel seen and heard. To connect. Great leaders know this and they know it starts with them.
Renowned Research Professor, University Of Houston, Dr Brené Brown believes ‘Vulnerability is the only bridge to build connection’.
Great leaders are the courageous ones - the ones who consistently behave and make decisions in line with their values. Those who say ‘I don’t know but we’ll work it out together’ and actively listen to their teams with curiosity and openness. Creating a psychologically safe environment, where all ideas are welcomed, for people to express themselves and feel valued for their authentic and unique contribution.
Great leaders trust their teams to deliver, whether physically at home or at the office, and prioritise their wellbeing above all else. Great leaders are not afraid to hire people who are different to them. In fact, they actively seek them out.
This is what vulnerability looks and feels like.
Try choosing courage over comfort today.
Recommended reading: Brené Brown, ‘Dare To Lead’.
Lucy Higgins ICF ACC
Lucy is certified and accredited by the International Coaching Federation. She specialises in Leadership, Wellbeing and Maternity Coaching. Having spent 20 years in corporate communications working for a top 10 PR agency followed by in-house roles at Nestlé, London Underground and ITV, she retrained as a Coach in 2018. She now helps women to achieve their potential without sacrificing their wellbeing. Lucy works 1-1 in her private practice and for Better Up as a Leadership Coach and Working Parents Coach. She also runs group coaching programmes for Mettacool and heads up their Maternity and Return to Work Coaching programme for EMEA.