2 THE messenger
Hand the mic to company leaders
Executives and managers shape how workers view their company and its commitment to mental health, making leaders the ideal
messengers around this issue.
Along with sharing their own
experiences, leaders should elevate
employees from diverse backgrounds in
discussions about mental health. Letting
different employee groups—people of
color, women, parents—share their
unique experiences and mental health
issues helps them feel seen and
welcomed in the workplace.
3 THE Delivery
Verizon media’s approach
As part of a campaign to reduce mental health stigma at work, Guru
Gowrappan, CEO at Verizon Media, shared a video featuring Verizon employees
from many different backgrounds talking about mental health.
Gowrappan also hosted a training with his executive team on how to create a
culture of trust and transparency. HBR reports that after Gowrappan wrote
about the training in a company-wide email, other managers followed his
example and expressed their support for mental health to their teams.
Employees noted that they felt like their leaders were advocates for the issue.
Provide accessible mental health benefits
A low-quality mental health benefits package signals to employees that the company doesn’t actually value mental wellbeing. To shift this
perception, your HR team should not only secure a robust benefits and healthcare package, but also frequently communicate the range of
Care covered by insurance
In 2020, many major health plans
expanded their behavioral health
network to address rising mental
health challenges connected to the
COVID pandemic. Now, many of those
options are here to stay. Virtual visits
and messaging-based care can help
employees start care sooner and
provide ongoing support throughout
the week or month.
Options beyond insurance
Since many workers opt out of
insurance coverage or can’t find
available in-network options through
their employers, companies should
also offer solutions that aren’t
insurance-based. You might offer a
wellness stipend or work with a thirdparty
vendor, such as Talkspace, to
offer counseling or virtual-based
Your time-off policies are
another important way to
support employee mental health.
Providing mental health days as
part of your sick leave policy
sends the message that mental
health is just as important as
physical health. Consider also
offering unlimited sick leave
policies to minimize burnout.
Remind team members that these mental health resources are available throughout the year as part of your employee
engagement strategy. You can tie the message to events like World Mental Health Day and note it during times of
heightened excitement and stress, such as orientation, year-end reviews, and promotional periods.