Mental and financial wellbeing
Looking after your employees’ wellbeing is a great step towards helping them achieve a happy and healthy life.
There are many aspects to achieving good wellbeing, and reducing stress is one of them. One area which causes people high levels of stress is money, and it’s no surprise as 43% of employees* said they have little or no money left at the end of the month and would not be able to afford an unexpected cost.
What is financial wellbeing and how is it linked to mental health?
Financial wellbeing is about feeling and being in control of your finances. If your employees are waking up in the morning and are instantly worrying about money, the impact on their day will be significant. Helping employees take control of their finances will reduce stress and improve both their mental and financial wellbeing. But why are so many people suffering with poor financial wellbeing?
There are many reasons such as readily available credit, easy one click purchasing online or generally living beyond their means. Another reason is the pressure from society to have the biggest and best materialistic things such as a house or car. And this pressure can ultimately lead to people making bad financial decisions and causing high levels of unnecessary stress. It’s also common for this pressure to come from those who are closest to us such as our friends, family or work colleagues.
No matter where the pressure comes from, it’s important to bear in mind that success is not having an expensive car or a big house, we are just conditioned to believe it is. Actually, success is being happy and healthy and materialistic things don’t often give us that.
What can you do as an employer to improve the financial wellbeing of your employees?
Remove the stigma
21% of employees* said social stigma causes them to lie about their finances, as they don’t want people to think they can’t manage their money. Breaking the taboo and getting people talking about money will help those who may be struggling. In the world we live in, it’s normal to feel overwhelmed with finances at times. And, once one person starts talking, it’s likely that others will relate. By removing the stigma you can also take away some of the pressure which employees may be feeling. Once people can understand that material possessions don’t always equal happiness, they can start to appreciate what does. Introducing a financial wellbeing programme can really help. Getting a professional to come in for group or 121 sessions can break down barriers and cut through the stigma.
Ensuring your employees have future focused goals and a plan to achieve them is vital to good financial wellbeing. And, it’s not just about setting the bigger goals, it’s vital to set the everyday goals which are going to help them achieve their main objectives. If you know an employee is struggling, just getting them to write down what they want to achieve with timelines can be a great place to start. Then, ask them to set their daily goals and tick them off when they accomplish them. The sense of achievement tends to keep people motivated and on track to reach those bigger goals.
Encourage people to seek help
For those people who cannot see a light at the end of the tunnel, you must encourage them to seek help. Sometimes just talking about financial wellbeing can be a great step in removing the stress as it creates an open dialogue. And it may be a financial coach, financial adviser or even a family member or a friend. No matter what, they shouldn’t go through it alone. There are many free debt services online too such as The Money Advice Service which you can also direct employees to.
There are many things that cause people stress but financial problems don’t have to be one of them. There are charities like Happy Days For Everyone, who can help your employees achieve a well body and mind as well as get them back on track with their finances.
If your employees are struggling with their finances and you would like to offer them financial support, Secondsight can help you implement steps to provide financial education in your business.
To find out more, get in touch today.
* All statistics were taking from the latest Secondsight research conducted in 2020. You can download a copy of the research paper here. https://www.second-sight.com/resources/2020-research-workplace-employee-benefits-wellbeing/
Information correct as of 17/08/2020
Secondsight is a trading name of Foster Denovo Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.