One of my LinkedIn connections recently posted a poll asking whether employers should be required to have a certified MHFA person at the workplace. More than 1000 folks responded, and 70% said “Yes, it should be required.” Some commenters asserted that anyone answering “No” had never experienced mental health problems and/or didn’t care about them.
In addition to revealing naïveté about workplace regulation, the responses to this poll exemplified
The limited understanding of MHFA possessed by people advocating it
Employers’ and HR leaders’ eagerness to solve complex problems with simplistic, trendy solutions, while ignoring substantive evidence-based strategies.
MHFA Cons and Pros
In the US, employers would have good reason to proceed with caution when implementing MHFA in the workplace.
MHFA certification seems unnecessary — having more to do with protecting revenue and intellectual property rather than mental health
As for the virtual training, to quote the CEO of National Council of Mental Wellbeing (from his “Happy New Year” email to instructors): “To put it simply, the technology just didn’t work.” (I chose not to offer virtual training until the tech problems are addressed. But NCMW was undaunted, continuing to charge thousands of dollars for virtual training that the organization acknowledged “caused countless frustrations.”)
MHFA’s greatest potential is to play a supporting role in a comprehensive solution — albeit, I’ll maintain, a role likely to prove valuable when implemented in the proper context and with realistic expectations.
Near the end of our 2020 Wrap-Up on the Redesigning Wellness podcast, host Jen Arnold asks me about Jozito LLC’s plans for 2021, which gave me a chance to explain how employers can offer Mental Health First Aid training to support their leaders, managers, and workforce at large. The section starts around minute 52:00 (the YouTube version below should go right there). And, below, I’ve provided a summary (adapted from the podcast), in question and answer format. Continue reading »
At the end of each year, a hush falls over the world, as it awaits the arrival of…
…the annual end-of-year wellness wrap-up that Jen Arnold and I record for her Redesigning Wellness podcast! It’s here!
This year was no different. Of course, this year was completely different, but Jen and I still managed to offer some reflections on 2020 in employee wellness. Unlike previous years, this time we forgot to prepare for took a pass on the nerding out on analysis of peer-reviewed studies that have tested the patience of delighted audiences in years past.
Predictions? Oh, we have predictions. We’ve got nothing. Our best shot at predictions were: Continue reading »
Since I first discovered Mental Health First Aid a few years ago, I’ve recognized it as an ideal cornerstone of any organization’s employee mental health strategy. As an interactive face-to-face program, it’s a much needed foundation for digital mental health solutions and other remote services. It’s a surefire way, in fact, to increase awareness and use of mental health benefits, like the often under-utilized employee assistance programs. Help employees get the support they need…when they need it.
I’ve advised most of my employer clients to offer Mental Health First Aid training — to their managers or their entire workforce — and now I’m thrilled to announce that, as a certified Mental Health First Aid instructor, I’ll deliver this training myself. Use this website’s Contact form for more info about how Mental Health First Aid will boost your employees’ wellbeing and, consequently, your organization’s performance. Continue reading »