SHRM Foundation

COHR recognized as "2013 Super Star!"


May 2019 Print


HR Leadership Conference

June 20, 2019
7:30 AM to 12:30 PM
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Marriott Grand Dunes
8400 Costa Verde Dr
Myrtle Beach, SC 29572

Thank you to our Sponsors:

Presenter Sponsor: New York Life - Patty Liebrick and Jason Bost

Booth Sponsor: Performance HCM

Bag Sponsors:

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Anita  Kurbiec - Assistant Controller - Ally Management, Inc.

Meredith Rodgers - Human Resources Supv - Palmetto Infusion Services

Ann Meyers -  Minuteman Press

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May 6, 2019, 11:13am

Creating A Workplace Culture That Values Mental Health

One Mind


Diversity & InclusionWe cover best practices for mental health in the work place.



It is no secret that the majority of today’s adult population spends at least one-third of their lives at work. Even as remote work becomes increasingly common, full-time jobs inevitably shape a person’s health habits, which can either help or hinder performance. Employers play an important role and have a significant stake in helping to shape their employees’ physical and mental health habits. Culture is a powerful tool to encourage healthy habits, and many companies have leveraged culture to help employees become more active and eat better. Increasingly, companies are finding ways to successfully and cost-efficiently promote better brain health in the workplace by creating a culture that values mental health needs and providing support without stigma. Relatively simple and inexpensive measures, such as building peer support networks with colleagues and starting a dialogue among managers that encourages healthy behavior can go a long way in improving mental health in the workplace.

Creating a workplace culture that values mental health does not need to be a costly endeavor, and in many cases, there is plenty of low-hanging fruit that can bear rewards for employers. For example, simple efforts to replace negative stigma with positive affirmation can significantly improve a workplace environment and employee health.

Recently, a Kentucky-based professional services organization provided positive evidence for the power of a leader’s voice in simply “starting the conversation” around mental health. Through a survey, the organization found that 90% of their employees struggled with mental health or knew someone who did, highlighting an opportunity to address the issue simply by promoting awareness and communication. Leading by example, the CEO spoke publicly about how he and his family were affected by poor mental health, while the company amplified the message broadly to its employees through multiple different touchpoints including a website and infographics. The organization also established a cohort of senior-level employees to conduct a deeper dive on the issue in order to better understand mental health challenges and how to implement solutions. After implementing these initiatives, 68% of employees reported that they spoke to someone about their mental health for the first time. The success of this example has been replicated in other industries and with other types of workforces around the world, demonstrating the powerful impact of corporate culture and leadership.

The voice of senior management is important and influential, but employees at every level can impactfully influence how mental health is approached in the workplace. In order to be successful, mental health support efforts must reach and educate all employees and should be incorporated into the day-to-day workplace environment. This inclusive approach makes combatting stigma truly ingrained and fosters widespread awareness among all employees that mental health matters whether or not they are personally dealing with an issue.

A popular multinational technology company led by example when targeting and engaging their employee population with a communications campaign. Instead of an annual physical wellness campaign, the organization decided to promote emotional well-beingto improve the resilience of their workforce. The technology company employs over 10,000 individuals, 80% of whom are male. The corporate leadership recognized the importance of engaging all employees and conducted focus groups to better understand the needs and messaging that would resonate with its workforce demographics. After convening employees of all levels in focus groups, they had identified the themes and terms that resonated throughout the employee population and developed a six-week communication strategy. For instance, the term "resilience" was more effective than "emotional well-being" or "mental health" within this specific employee population. The campaign included simple elements such as educational emails, quiet rooms for meditation and weekly Skype sessions led by mental health experts. Ultimately, the organization found that providing opportunities for employees to participate in the discussion on resilience yielded higher participation rates. A post-campaign survey revealed that the campaign had positive results – impressively, employee depression symptoms improved by 10%.


Garen Staglin

Garen is the founder of One Mind at Work, focused on a gold standard for workplace mental health and well-being.

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Workplace Wellbeing

How to Use Benefits to Boost Employee Health & Performance

Presenters: Cassie Whitlock, BambooHR; and Jessica Thomas, League

View live: June 6, 2 p.m. ET / 11 a.m. PT (available for on-demand viewing through September 2019)

Program length: 60 minutes

Register now

By now, you and your employees have probably have given up on many of your New Year’s resolutions, particularly in the areas of health and wellbeing — something HR teams spend a lot of time and money to promote. In this program, BambooHR's Cassie Whitlock and League's Jessica Thomas will discuss how you can tap into your employees’ desire to stick to their goals and stay healthy and productive year-round. Hear how to explore how to build a holistic benefits strategy that promotes a culture of wellbeing. You will learn:  

  • The relationship between culture and benefits
  • Strategies to tailor benefits to your workers’ needs
  • How to articulate the value of workplace wellbeing to leaders
  • The five pillars of wellbeing

Learn about our speakerAbout the Presenters: Cassie Whitlock is the director of human resources at BambooHR. Whitlock started her career in accounting, but working with smaller companies, the HR function was always handed to her and became her passion. She loves the intersection of business and humans and believe that when companies focus on the human aspect of their people, the people in turn focus on the business. Humor and a thoughtful, listening nature are the mark of Whitlock's leadership style, and she views her team as family. 

Jessica Thomas is a senior wellness consultant at League and has spent 8 years in the worksite wellness industry helping employers implement strategic wellness programs. Prior to joining League, Thomas worked for a benefits consulting firm and before that worked on the wellness provider side. Thomas blends her passion for health and wellness with her education in data and technology to make it easier for both employers and employees to reap the benefits of wellness initiatives in the workplace. 

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Recertification Credit

SHRM Certification has approved this webcast for 1 PDC toward SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP recertification. A program code will be provided at the end of the webcast. The program also meets recertification credit standards set by the HR Certification Institute and other HR certifying bodies, but candidates must manually enter their activity into their records.

Webcast Sponsor

This webcast is sponsored by BambooHR


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