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Time To Talk Day

Helen Larkin Blog, Charity

5 tips to help you have those important conversations

 Today is ‘Time to Talk Day’, and Ben Dowd, our CEO, shared why it’s all about giving people close to you a moment to open up and share. Having experienced personally how important it is to try and create opportunities for people to talk, whether that is children or adults, he’s encouraging all at Onecom, friends and acquaintances to get involved…

This year, people are encouraged to ‘Take 10 Together’ and take 10 minutes to start a meaningful conversation with a colleague, friend or family member, about their mental health.

57% of UK employees* say they have experienced mental health issues at work, but less than half of that group feel confident to open up about it. With around 10 million people experiencing a mental health issue each year in the UK…this is an issue that needs to be highlighted, and we can all do our bit to help.

My 5 tips to help you have those important conversations:

  1. Take the time out to ask someone ‘How are you?’ and be prepared to spend at least 10 minutes listening and engaging.
  2. Finding a neutral meeting place outside of work which can help break down barriers may encourage them to speak more openly.
  3. Be supportive and positive, exploring the issues they are experiencing and thinking about how you may be able to help. Calling on personal experiences can also really help.
  4. Show empathy and demonstrate to them that you hear and understand what they are saying and feeling.
  5. Keep talking (either verbally or by text) – follow up and ask them how they are doing, reassuring them that your door is always open.

At Onecom our employees are our most valuable resource, and their wellbeing is vital. We are therefore committed to providing, maintaining and promoting a healthy and supportive working environment.

Last year we launched two new benefits, The Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) and our company-wide Mental Health First Aiders (MHFA). Both services are designed to help our people deal with personal and professional matters that could be affecting home or work life, health and general wellbeing. Since their launch, we have seen good uptake of both services proving that these services which I see as a real positive, as our employees clearly see them as being very helpful.

We will also be hosting a bake sale today, supporting ‘Time to Talk’ alongside our chosen charity YoungMinds, raising awareness for such a great movement! All donations will go to helping YoungMinds with the fantastic work they are doing to help all young minds feel supported and empowered.