Mental health issues on job sites are a serious matter, and the construction industry is no exception. In fact, studies show that workers in the construction industry are more susceptible to mental burnout than in any other field of work. So it is especially pertinent for construction companies to take action.
No matter the industry, mental health issues are something that needs to be addressed with the same urgency as any other safety risk. However, in an industry like construction, physical safety risks can often overshadow mental health risks.
In this post, we’ll look into the mental health crisis in construction a little more, discussing some statistics that demonstrate the severity of the issue and why it needs to be improved. We’ll also provide you with 5 helpful tips to improve mental health on construction job sites on a day-to-day basis.
The first step to improve this problem is, of course, recognizing it. Mental health is a sensitive issue that often goes unacknowledged in the working world.
One study showed that although 60% of construction workers reported a struggle with their mental health, only one-third of these people reported that they would report these struggles to their managers. This shows the effect of stigmatization.
This stigmatization is often attributed to the fact that the majority of construction workers are men. There is also a “grind culture” in the construction industry that motivates people to work harder. This often results in them looking after their mental state less and less.
As such, there are worryingly high suicide rates in construction. There are also issues of depression, anxiety, and substance abuse. All of this can significantly hinder not only the personal lives of workers but also their work ethic and productivity too.
It is therefore important to improve upon mental health in construction, both for the sake of your workers as well as for your company as a whole.
Let’s take a look at 5 different tips you can implement daily on job sites to improve the mental health situation for your employees.
Communication is always key, so this tip is extremely important. As we’ve said, you need to afford your employees a voice. This does not just mean letting them speak their minds. It also means opening channels of communication that go more than one way.
For example, allow your employees to discuss their concerns with you, and give feedback that actually gets addressed or acknowledged. Communication is also important between employees themselves on a daily basis. It helps keep everyone in the know about what’s going on onsite at all times.
This is where a mobile communication platform like SkillSignal is highly effective. If there are any problems or incidents, workers can immediately report them and get help. A real-time mobile communication system can therefore help improve safety and give workers more peace of mind when working.
There are various measures you can put in place to improve daily onsite safety. Doing so shows that you really care about your workers and their safety and wellbeing. You should be doing everything that you can to keep everyone as safe as possible on a job site.
One way to do this is to provide easy access to training resources and safety videos. Having a mobile solution with these tools built-in ensures that your workers have access to the resources they need to do their jobs properly and safely. This can help boost worker confidence and lower stress levels as they will feel more equipped to handle their jobs.
Wellness programs are another great way to get your employees not only involved in the struggle against mental health but also motivated and excited about it, too. They can help change the way your employees work and respond to issues in their work.
Implementing a wellness program can give your employees the tools they need to be able to identify when they or a fellow worker is struggling. It can also help eliminate the shame that comes with mental health issues. This will encourage employees to ask for help when they need it.
Not only should there be the option for workshops, training, wellness programs, and simple things like pamphlets and posters, but you should also put some work into providing a multitude of resources for your employees. These should be easily accessible and well promoted.
You can provide resources like substance abuse program information or memberships, depression and anxiety support groups, or even just information on hotlines or psychologists that your construction workers can call or visit. This will always work to ease stigmas, too.
Other resources you can offer are those that come with the SkillSignal app, namely site safety orientation programs and safety videos. Workers can brush up on their general knowledge and the policies of their company by simply using an application.
Management also needs to do their part. Not only do they need to provide the necessary training and resources for employees, but they need to take the responsibility to educate themselves. It’s vital that managers learn to recognize the potential risk factors in their employees.
Teach and train managers and team leaders to be able to take the reins and ensure that all of the above are carried out. Communication, awareness, and positivity surrounding mental health should be promoted, and resources should be provided freely.
The mental health crisis in construction is reaching critical proportions. It is up to everyone involved to work hard at alleviating the pressures involved in generating burnout-inducting stress.
This can be done in many ways – the overarching one being to create understanding and an environment that fosters helpfulness and compassion.
Keeping in mind these 5 tips to improve mental health daily on construction job sites, you can better succeed in creating not only a more productive workforce but a happier one.
Check out SkillSignal’s website and mobile solutions today.
Our app can streamline communication, improve data capturing, and provide you with the resources needed to improve mental health on construction job sites. Are you interested in learning more? Contact us today at: 917-745-6877 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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