Mental Wellbeing at Work: 5 Trends You Need to Know About

Workplace wellbeing is a challenge that is here to stay. In light of recent pressures, cost of living increases, interest rates, housing affordability and more, the workplace has become an environment where team members are seeking more than a weekly pay check. This has been the trend for years now, as we see new generations enter the workforce individuals are wanting more from their workplaces. They are seeking psychological safety, a sense of belonging and a purpose that aligns with their values. It is a growing challenge that all leaders must respond to by implementing the right strategies, support and understanding.  

The shift in how organisations address mental wellbeing has evolved rapidly and for the better. Headspace found that while only 35% of employees in 2020 reported that their company’s leaders talk about their own mental health, 89% say their leaders do so today1.

There are various ways that leaders can support their team’s mental health. Today, we’re sharing five key trends identified by Headspace in their 2024 Workplace Mental Health Trends Report. 

1. Work stress impacts personal lives significantly 

Work stress can significantly impact team members’ personal lives, leading to negative effects on physical health, relationship problems, carer responsibilities, and serious mental health challenges. When not addressed efficiently, work stress can become cyclical, leading to long-term impacts on an individual’s mental and physical health, as well as their job performance and engagement.  

​To address this, organisations must foster a culture of psychological safety and embed practices that ensure work-life balance is maintained. Leaders can support this balance  by: 

  • Encouraging team members to set boundaries. As a leader, it is important to set and role model boundaries. Practices you can implement include not responding to work messages outside of work hours, ending meetings on time, and having scheduled focus time. At Corporate Edge, we recently introduced an ‘hour of power’, a daily practice where we don’t schedule meetings and only contact others for urgent situations. 
  • Demonstrating flexibility. Team members do have a life outside of work, and it is important that leaders recognise that and implement opportunities for flexibility. Set standards with team members so they are clear where flexibility is available, and invite open communication so that team members feel safe to speak up when they are struggling.  
  • Offering comprehensive mental health and wellbeing solutions. Leaders should consider the needs of their team members and offer personalised support. This can be in the form of stress leave, a dedicated mental health day, or readily available contacts to discuss mental health. 

2. Interpersonal relationships can make or break workplace mental health 

Work is one of the best places to meet others who share similar experiences and interests. No matter the working requirements (remote, hybrid or on-site), team members can reduce their loneliness by building connections that foster a sense of belonging.  

Here are some ways leaders can make sure the workplace encourages connection: 

  • Invest in Employee Resource Groups (ERGs). These team member-led groups based on shared interests not only build connection and inclusion, but they also are a valuable source of knowledge. 
  • Create time for personal connection. Purposely set aside time in the week to engage with team members and get to know more about each other. Long-term benefits include deeper collaboration, higher engagement levels, and employee satisfaction. At Corporate Edge, one of our monthly initiatives is the Village Check-in where we spend 20 minutes in a hybrid space discussing a certain topic or participating in a trivia/game.
  • Encourage peer-to-peer and intergenerational mentorship. There are currently 4 generations in most workplaces. That is 4 generations’ worth of knowledge, experience, values, ways of working and ideas. By implementing intergenerational mentorship, team members can learn valuable technical and soft skills, and also build relationships, creating a sense of belonging. Read our thought piece about generations in the workplace to better understand how they can work together effectively. 

    3. Managers play a critical role in fostering healthy workplaces, but they often lack the necessary support

    Leaders play a vital role in creating a psychologically safe and inclusive work environment. However, they often lack the support and training needed to effectively support the mental health of their team members. According to Headspace, 24% of HR leaders say managers are required to take mental health-specific training2. This knowledge gap can have a lasting impact on team members who seek help from their leader.  

    To combat this, here are some suggestions: 

    • Provide training. Ensure your leaders are well equipped to support not only their team members but also themselves by providing access to mental health training. Training can come in many forms such as coaching and can be highly accessible by being online or self-paced. 
    • Provide the resources. Organisations should always aim to provide their leaders with the resources and tools to support their teams. On-demand access to mental health coaches/providers or therapy sessions, as well as detailed guides for responding to these situations, can be extremely valuable.  

    4. Trust is key 

    To create a psychologically safe environment, it is important to have trust between team members and leaders. Trust enables individuals to openly raise their challenges and know that they will be supported. Here’s how you can build trust:

    • Lead with transparency. Open, two-way communication is key to creating a transparent work environment. Consider implementing ‘ask me anything’ during meetings or important updates and encourage leaders to be open in one-on-ones with their team.   
    • Provide mental health resources. Ensure your team members know what resources are available to them, and that you regularly update your team on its existence. By doing this, organisations can further reinforce their commitment to mental health, and team members are more likely to engage with such resources aimed at supporting their wellbeing.

    5. Build mental resilience 

    Building team members’ mental resilience is increasingly important in the face of continued instability. To ensure your team are ready to tackle any challenges, consider the below: 

    • Support those returning from mental health leave. Individuals who are returning from this type of absence need to be supported – and a clear structure can help! It is important that individuals get back into their work in a stress-free and productive way. Also, when a team member takes leave, provide a detailed and clear coverage plan to ensure productivity continues and other team members feel supported, avoiding burnout. 
    • Structure the workday to fulfil basic needs. Sometimes, all people need is a break and some food. Make sure that there is time in everyone’s diary to take a break from work, eat and stay hydrated. Often, it is the most basic of needs that make the biggest and most immediate difference. 
    • Provide resources, such as coaching or resilience training to support individuals. Understanding the basics of giving negative feedback, knowing how to have a difficult conversation and how to deal with different types of people by seeking to understand first, are all key elements in a well-rounded resilient team member. 

    These five trends highlight the importance of coaching, wellbeing, and culture in creating a supportive and healthy workplace environment. By addressing work stress, fostering interpersonal relationships, supporting managers, building trust, and promoting mental resilience, organisations can create a culture that prioritises mental health and wellbeing.

    For more information about workplace wellbeing, download our guide below!


    • Headspace, 2024, ‘Workforce State of Mind: Sixth Annual Workplace Mental Health Trends Report’, 10/5/24


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