“A place where asking the question “are you ok?” can really work is in the workplace,” says R U OK?, a charity supporting mental health.
“As employers or staff, we can all create a culture where people feel confident asking and answering this most important question.
“Besides our legal responsibility of providing a safe and healthy workplace, these conversations can make a real difference to staff going through a tough time.”
Employers are encouraged to visit R U OK?’s website to access its material
on how to have these discussions in the workplace – not just today, but as an ongoing initiative.
The charity has the following tips on how to make the best use of this material:
1. Send it out at a thoughtful time (for example: around staff reviews, on the completion of a large project, at the end of the financial year).
2. Ask someone well-known at work to send out the initial email. It’s a good way to ensure the staff read it.
3. Put up the posters, as people need to see a message a few times for it to sink in.
4. Include a story in your employee newsletter (a heartfelt story by an employee is always good).
5. Mention the campaign at any relevant forums.
6. Invite workplace champions to feed back their thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org
Today is national ‘R U OK? Day’ – a day on which people are encouraged to ask friends, family, and co-workers about their mental wellbeing.