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Supporting men’s emotional wellbeing in the workplace
11 January 2022
At OUP, we’re committed to supporting the wellbeing of our colleagues, as part of the everyday experience of working with us. Towards the end of 2021, we held two conversations to discuss men’s mental health to mark International Men’s Day, where we invited a panel of colleagues from across the Press to come together and speak about their wellbeing.
Research shows that men are less likely to access professional help to tackle mental health issues, and according to a 2020 study by MIND, two in five men admit to regularly feeling worried or low, which consequently could have a negative impact on their work performance, parenting, and relationships.
The sessions, which were open to all employees, gave colleagues the chance to discuss their own mental health experiences and share their positive wellbeing practices. The conversations focused on the impact that the pandemic has had on men’s mental health, family and work life, and the importance of reaching out for support when needed. The panel were open and honest about why mental health is so important, and shared examples of the practical steps they’ve taken to protect and improve their wellbeing.
Speaking about the sessions, Philippa Kilgannon, HR Director and wellbeing lead said: ‘As a longstanding advocate for wellbeing, I know that the more we talk and listen, the more we start to normalize the conversations around mental health. The conversations have given me a greater insight into some of the key issues and ideas on positive practices around men’s mental health, which I will take forward as we continue to support wellbeing for all colleagues.’
Casper Grathwohl, who chaired one of the sessions from New York, said: ‘I was so pleased to be able to join such a knowledgeable and reflective panel of colleagues from across the world, and I am grateful to them for sharing their experiences and what they’ve learned with all of us, in such sensitive and thoughtful ways.’
Toby Tritschler, who attended one of the sessions, said: ‘I attended the talk on men’s mental health as someone who has experienced poor emotional wellbeing in the past and was keen to share experiences and hear from colleagues around the world. It was great to hear others from different areas share experiences which were in so many ways similar; and shows the value of talking, sharing and learning from each other.’
Conversations around mental health are part of a wider programme of activities that support the wellbeing of colleagues at OUP. All colleagues can access professional emotional and financial wellbeing advice, 24 hours a day and in their local language, through our Employee Assistance Programme. We also have a Wellbeing Charter which outlines how we look after every individual in our community and how we support overall wellbeing as part of the everyday experience of working at OUP.