Recently, a typically composed businessman client of mine revealed a sense of being 'unglued'. The reason? The unexpected loss of a pivotal employee who effortlessly juggled numerous responsibilities. Her exit, prompted by burnout, left both him and his business in a challenging situation. He expressed astonishment that no one had detected her struggle, highlighting the critical need for workplaces to enhance mental health support to avert such disruptions and safeguard employee well-being.

A McKinsey Health survey of 15,000 workers in 15 countries (2022) discovered that a significant 25% exhibited signs of burnout. Indicators to watch for include persistent fatigue, overwhelm, cynicism, emotional reactivity, hypersensitivity, excessive sick days, recurrent deadline failures, weakened work ethic, unprompted agitation, poor concentration, and reduced productivity. These symptoms collectively signal a need for immediate employer intervention to prevent detrimental effects on both employees and the organization.

Women, constituting a substantial portion of the workforce, often face heightened stress, anxiety, and depression alongside physical symptoms during menopause/perimenopause. An overwhelming 80% of women in perimenopause are in the workforce, with 90% experiencing symptoms, a third of whom report these symptoms affecting their work, and a quarter concealing them. One in four may leave their job due to these issues. An environment that supports women can significantly enhance their quality of life and work performance.

Neglected stress, anxiety, depression, or burnout among employees can lead to significant costs for employers, including increased absenteeism, reduced productivity, potential income replacement costs, and voluntary departures. For employees, the impact includes diminished quality of life, financial instability, and a ripple effect on family and social life.

Employers can foster a healthier work environment by prioritizing mental health, implementing well-being policies, setting clear expectations, enhancing time management, and ensuring role clarity. Investing in the mental health of team leaders and promoting fair and inclusive standards is also crucial. Regular check-ins, safety policies against bullying, and fostering unity can create a supportive culture. Educating on recognizing signs of stress, anxiety, menopause, and burnout, and offering flexible work arrangements can further support employee well-being.

The McKinsey Health survey emphasizes the global prevalence of burnout symptoms, urging organizations to prioritize mental health in the workplace. By focusing on organizational, management, and employee health, companies can enhance performance and productivity, leading to overall success for both employer and employee.