Connecting with your staff on R U OK? Day can seem like a daunting task. You might not be sure how to best approach the situation, or how to encourage conversations around mental health and wellbeing especially in the workplace environment. R U OK? Day provides the perfect opportunity to check-in with your teams, connect with them and ask them how they are going.
Now more than ever are these moments of connection and conversations important. Just because we are socially distancing, does not mean we have to remain distant. As 2021 has brought with it many unprecedented experiences, mental health struggles have seen a rise, even for those who have not previously experienced bouts of mental illness.
Lockdowns and working from home have led to many challenges for Australians the past year. According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW), between 16 March 2020 and 25 April 2021, over 15 million MBS-subsidised mental health-related services were processed with at least 20% of them being delivered via telehealth.
To help better understand some questions surrounding R U OK? Day, EatFirst has compiled a list of FAQs and answers regarding R U OK? Day below:
Whilst R U OK? Day 2021 falls on Thursday 9th of September, take the time to always check-in with staff and take action when you believe anyone in your team is showing signs of struggling, not just on R U OK Day.
However, R U OK? is more than just a date on the calendar, it is a non-profit charity and cause dedicated to the prevention of suicide which dedicates R U OK? Day to encourage and raise awareness for people to bring up the conversation of mental health.
R U OK Day is a great initial way to start the conversation with your staff, friends and loved ones and ask the important question: R U OK?
Sending a surprise pack to your employee’s homes can be the perfect way to spread some joy. This year, EatFirst have crafted many packages you can send directly to your staff’s homes. Check out these and more ideas below! Or use our catering filters when looking through suppliers.
All States In Australia:
If your staff have returned to the office, why not acknowledge the day with a classic morning tea. Single-serve morning tea boxes offer the perfect solution and offer a yummy sweet and savoury mix. They may be individual serves, but the experience is built to be shared over a cup of tea or coffee, as a great conversation starter. Check out these suppliers below:
NSW: Vanilla Blue, Food Geek
QLD: Entice Me
SA: South Terrace, Cafe 228
VIC: Brisk Catering
Cupcakes are an R U OK Day classic. Yellow cupcakes are a bright and sunny addition to the office and perfect to share with your team. Add them to your 1on1 management meetings for not only a sweet treat but as a way to check-in.
Check out these suppliers for your office:
Whether you are all together in the office or working from home, treating your team to a healthy and nutritious lunch can be a great way to show appreciation. All individually packed, each person will get their own meal you can eat together as a team. Sometimes, showing your employees a sense of community and fostering positivity in your workplace can be the best action to take.
Be relaxed, friendly and concerned in your approach.
Ask questions such as:
"How are you going?” OR "What’s been happening?"
However, if you are feeling concerned for them, mention specific things such as "You seem less chatty than usual. How are you going?"
Take what they say seriously and don't interrupt or rush the conversation.
It’s important to check in every now and again and let them know you have been thinking about them, and want to know how they have been going since the last chat.
Stay in touch and be there for them. Genuine care and concern can make a real difference.
Not sure how to best start the conversation? Here are some ideas:
Send your team a ‘Conversation Starter Pack’ with items such as an R U OK? mug, conversation cards, tea bags and snacks.
For more resources on how to best support your staff please check out the R U OK Day website.