A recent survey administered by the Census Bureau revealed that a third of Americans are experiencing signs of clinical anxiety or depression, a data point that reflects a significant rise from pre-pandemic levels. Isolation, job insecurity, and fears related to one’s health and the health of loved ones are all likely contributing to our country’s growing mental health crisis.
Those who work in the professional services sector have even more to contend with. That’s because, according to research, this area experiences significantly higher levels of stress than many other professions. A 2016 study of nearly 13,000 attorneys found that 20.6% of participants exhibited signs of alcohol dependency and 28% were found to suffer from depression. Fortunately, awareness of this problem has been growing steadily. For example, in February, as part of an effort to help destigmatize mental health issues among legal professionals, ALM published the results of its “Mental Health and Substance Abuse Survey.” And the Legal Marketing Association recently launched a Well-Being Resource Center to support legal professionals in being resilient, healthy and whole.
If your firm has not already begun to take mental health seriously, now is the time. The well-being of your colleagues, and the continued success of your firm, may depend on it. Professional service marketers and communications specialists can partner with their human resources departments or wellness committees to develop and distribute materials related to promoting well-being, especially in light of today’s crisis.
Here are just a few ways in which you and your marketing colleagues can help.
- Distribute information about counseling resources. Many therapists are providing telehealth sessions to their clients. If your firm has an employee assistance program, work with HR to develop materials that remind employees of this resource and provide direction about how to get access to care.
- Create digital guides to educate colleagues about activities that are proven to promote mental health, such as meditation, mindfulness and journaling.
- Contract outside experts and use the lunch-and-learn webinar format to provide guided meditation or afternoon yoga breaks.
- In recognition that human connection is critical to our mental well-being, hold regular Zoom parties, like post-work happy hours (alcohol optional), to foster camaraderie among coworkers that they may be missing because of working from home.
How Can Jaffe Help You Promote Well-Being at Your Firm?
One of our guiding principles at Jaffe is that empathy is an essential element of any marketing or communications effort. That was true before the pandemic, but COVID-19 has pushed empathy to the forefront. During this difficult time, it is important that we treat each other with care and compassion. Let us know if we can help. Contact Terry M. Isner, Owner/CEO Marketing & Branding, at firstname.lastname@example.org.