Men blame work for poor mental health

Commuter queue

Commuter queue

"Many men work in industries where a macho culture prevails or where a competitive environment may exist which prevents them from feeling able to be open".

Cary Cooper, 50th anniversary professor of organisational psychology and health at Manchester Business School and president of the CIPD, told People Management that, while women tend to juggle home and work, men "still get their main identity from their job".

The charity raised concerns that many men do not feel able to speak to their bosses about the impact their job is having on their wellbeing.

In a survey for mental health charity Mind 32% of men said work was to blame for poor mental health, compared to just 14% of women.

The mental health charity encourages men to open up and seek help earlier to avoid reaching a crisis point.

And 31% of men said the culture in their organisation makes it possible to speak openly about their mental health problems, compared with 38% of women.

Women said their job and problems outside of the workplace were equal contributing factors.

The poll found one in three men (32 per cent) attributed poor mental health to their job, compared with 14 per cent who said it was problems outside of work.

The research, which surveyed 15,000 employees from 30 organisations, of which 1,763 are now experiencing poor mental health, also revealed that, while two in five women (38 per cent) felt their company's culture made it possible to speak openly about their mental health problems, only around one in three men (31 per cent) agreed. Previous research undertaken by Mind suggests that men attempt to find ways of dealing with their issues on their own rather than seeking any help or opening up to someone.

Instead of talking about their problems, some men prefer to watch TV, exercise or turn to drink, the charity said.

Mamo also noted that over the last few years, Mind had seen employers come on leaps and bounds when it comes to tackling stress and supporting the mental wellbeing of their staff, including those with a diagnosed mental health problem.

"However, there is more to do and employers do need to recognise the different approaches they may need to adopt in how they address mental health in the workplace", she explained. The Index is a benchmark of best policy and practice when it comes to staff mental health, created to celebrate the good work employers are doing to promote and support positive mental health, and to provide key recommendations on the specific areas where there is room to improve.

"We hope that many other organisations will follow in their footsteps by taking part in our Workplace Wellbeing Index in 2017-18".

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