Link: Flow: Grow | From Mayhem to Mental Fitness

Link: Flow: Grow | From Mayhem to Mental Fitness

Foreword

I first had the privilege of meeting Kris Harold through my burnout research. He comes from decades of experience in management and mining operations, a world away from mine as an academic. In talking to Kris, it was clear that he wanted to make a difference to the mental health of employees in Australia; his passion for the topic was palpable. However, it was also evident that he had something new to say about how to make our workplaces healthier and thus more productive.

It is becoming more widely accepted in the field that organisations cannot afford to ignore the psychological health of workers. Productivity, employee engagement, absenteeism and workplace injury are all directly related to how ‘well’ a worker feels in their job. We know that neglecting to address these issues not only impacts the worker who is suffering, but the organisation’s bottom line.

This book encourages us to move away from the notion of mental health at work, and towards a new definition: mental fitness. The concept is relatively new and scholars are still in the process of defining the term. However, the benefits of the term ‘mental fitness’ are widely recognised, and in exploring the notion, this book encourages us to think about what is strong, rather than merely what is wrong.

The term mental fitness diminishes the stigma that plagues the term ‘mental health’. And finally, it allows managers to see the psychological health of employees as an occupational imperative that is just as important as preventing physical illness and injury on the job.

The authors move beyond the more obvious strategies to achieve psychological wellbeing in the workplace, and dig a little deeper, exploring culture, attitudes, values and self awareness for managers. It is a book that will help managers assess themselves and their organisation honestly, and diagnose issues that need to be addressed in order to achieve mental fitness. We know that managers are the first line of defence in safeguarding the wellbeing of staff. Read this book if you want to be a better manager, have a more productive team, and improve the working lives of your employees.

Dr Marieke LedinghamUniversity of Notre Dame, Australia
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