Mental Health for Leaders

40 Episodes
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By: Lindsay Recknell

You are a People Leader or a HR professional, working hard to create an amazing employee experience for your team and your organization. But between the operational tasks of your job, managing emotions and politics both up and down the corporate ladder, and trying to find some semblance of work/life integration in your own life, I suspect you could be overwhelmed and burnt-out. Even the thought of navigating the complicated world of mental health at work probably seems like too much to handle. Let this podcast can be your not-so-secret weapon to help fix that! I am your host...

S06 | E03 Support Your Human Capital with Jim Link
#3
Last Friday at 7:00 AM

The humans in your organization are the most important asset you have. It’s essential that you take care of them, especially as we come out of the pandemic. There’s an overwhelming feeling of isolation that employees felt in the last few years and the confusion of today is causing the isolation to linger.

What’s a leader to do? Go back to foundations. Empathy is the single most important skill that leaders can and should use to ensure that employees feel safe and heard. Unfortunately, empathy is also a skill that we’ve been trained out of u...


S06 | E02 Unlocking Your Leadership Potential with Alex Alonso
#2
06/24/2022

When we take care of our leaders and their mental health, we’re all able to show up as our best selves--at work and at home. As leaders in human resources, we can do this by unlocking potential by supporting them to growth their mental health skills - in empathy, leadership, and coping with challenges.

This is important because organizations that are viewed as highly empathetic have employees that are more likely to positively talk about their company to friends, peers, and families. And organizations that truly focus on culture are twice as likely to retain their em...


S06 | E01 SHRM Round-up: Close the Skills Gap
#1
06/17/2022

I recently attended the Society of Human Resources Management conference (SHRM) in New Orleans, Louisiana and had the pleasure of attending many sessions and connecting with a handful of speakers talking about mental health in the workplace. Of course you know this is my happy place!

If you listened to Season 5 of the podcast, you can listen in to those conversations. Nicole Butts and I talked about organizational justice, Wendi Safstrom shared about the need to prioritize mental health at work, and Daryll Bryant talked about how to flourish at work. Of course, there were many other...


S05 | E13 Laughing at Work is Totally Okay with Greg Schwem
#13
06/10/2022

Countless studies have shown that laughing is a good way to relieve stress. And even if we love our job and our teammates, there’s always an element of stress in the workplace.

So why not find ways to spice it up with some humor?

According to Greg Schwem, comedian and corporate speaker, humor is disappearing from the corporate world just when we need it the most. Organizations are shying away from using humor of any kind for fear of offending someone. But the reality is that the positive benefits of humor far outweigh the ne...


S05 | E12 Compassion in Leadership with Marissa Afton
#12
06/08/2022

The reality of the pandemic has impacted the workplace in many ways the past couple years, some more expected than others. One thing that leaders are finding is that after so much time working from home and being more vulnerable, employees are looking to have a more genuine connection with their coworkers. Gone are the days of putting on your work persona before clocking in. People are expecting authenticity, openness, and organizations that value them for who they are.

Along with this cultural shift, it’s important for leadership to learn how to be compassionate. What does be...


S05 | E11 Leveraging Your Influence with Vivian Blade
#11
06/06/2022

With an increasing number of employees leaving their organizations as part of the Great Resignation, it’s more important than ever that we as people leaders create an environment where employees feel valued and want to be. A great way to do this is by developing your influence in the workplace, over your people, work culture, and organization.

Today I’m joined by Vivian Blade, leadership expert and thought leader, to discuss skills and tactics that leaders can use to have more influence in the workplace, including influencing up the ladder, and how to leverage that influence for...


S05 | E10 Virtual Work & Respect with Lorie Reichel-Howe
#10
06/03/2022

Communication feels very different when we’re working virtually. But even through we’re screen-to-screen, we still need to be respectful and have expectations and guidelines around what’s appropriate and what’s not.

We’ve learned from the last few years that it’s easy to feel isolated when we’re not in-person. So regular check-ins and conversations is essential. But what does that look like? And how do you communicate with others who don’t have their cameras on?

On this episode of the podcast, Lorie Reichel-Howe of Conversations in the Workplace is talking about ju...


S05 | E09 Emotional Technology and Work with Javier Santos
#9
06/01/2022

There’s a common misconception about leadership, and that’s that we’re paid to be rational and not emotional. But in reality, our emotions are what make us human. And don’t we want human leaders who constantly push their feelings down. For one, it’s physically unhealthy. And for another, it doesn’t open up the space for others to feel included and like their emotions matter. Because they do.

On this episode of the podcast, Javier Santos is sharing about emotional technology, the evidence that shows us the value of neuropsychoanalysis and how our brains map m...


S05 | E08 The Language of Receiving Feedback with Dr. Teresa Peterson
#8
05/30/2022

As leaders, we know the importance of giving feedback. Our teams need to know how they’re doing so everyone can work better…more efficiently and at a higher level of excellence.

But what about receiving feedback? It matters how our teams receive the feedback we give them, and how we, the leaders, receive feedback ourselves.

It could take a lot for a team member to come forward and give honest and open feedback to their manager, even if that leader asks for it so it’s essential that they feel safe to do so. Simply...


S05 | E07 Flourishing at Work with Daryll Bryant
#7
05/27/2022

On a human level, we know that we all have struggles. But the definition of a good leader is not someone who leaves everything at home because they need to be seen as strong and impactful. In fact, vulnerability is a much more important trait of leadership. It’s just one component of helping teams flourish at work.

Organizations and leaders need to be more aware than ever about the changing workforce. New technology and new workers are allowing teams to work more efficiently and more autonomously. But when old school politics and practices get in the wa...


S05 | E06 Organizational Justice with Nicole Butts
#6
05/25/2022

Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) is a hot topic right now and one that a lot of organizations have begun to address. But are they really doing the work? Not always, says podcast guest Nicole Yeldell Butts.

We know that diversity work is necessary but the challenge is getting leaders to do the work alongside the organization. It’s not a box to be checked or a meeting that needs to be held. DEI work needs to be part of an organization’s values and day-to-day operations.

In this episode, we talk about the fear of p...


S05 | E05 Forward-Thinking HR Leadership with Jennifer McClure
#5
05/23/2022

The world is different than it was 3 years ago, and it is different than it will be 3 years from now. Change is a constant in life and business alike, and as people leaders it's an opportunity that we get to intentionally adapt to these changes along the way.

Today on the podcast, Jennifer McClure joins me to answer questions about what changes HR leadership has faced over the years and how it will continue to change into the future. With an emphasis on skills like problem solving, integrity, and relationship building, it’s clear that the way fo...


S05 | E04 Winning Conversations with Respect, Empathy, and Maturity with Kenston Henderson
#4
05/20/2022

What if we all approached conversations with others with respect, empathy, and maturity? Just think of all we could accomplish together! We would all win!

Every one of us has a different lived experience and we all see things differently from one another. At the same time, we all have biases. We tend to gravitate toward people who look like us and who we were surrounded by as we were growing up.

In short, we’re all human. And we need to move outside our comfort zones if we want to see change in the wo...


S05 | E03 The Need to Prioritize Mental Health in the Workplace with Wendi Safstrom
#3
05/18/2022

Nobody is immune to mental health issues, and they affect all aspects of your life. Even your physical and economical vitality (or lack thereof) can be linked to your mental health. That’s why it is so important for organizations to make mental health in the workplace a priority, especially as we work together to try and establish a “new normal” in the wake of the pandemic.

Earlier this year, the Society for Human Resource Management Foundation published a report detailing the current state of mental health in the workplace. Today, Wendi Safstrom, President of the SHRM Founda...


S05 | E02 Cause the Effect You Want to See in Business with Jeaneen Andrews-Feldman
#2
05/16/2022

Organizations can’t survive without people. And HR professionals have the privilege to and responsibility for starting conversations, creating influence, and leading the cause and effect that happens in our organizations.

When we empower employees and support them through challenges and adversity, encouraging them to grow and develop themselves personally and professionally, they get to make an impact on those around them--in the office and at home.

On this episode, chief marketing and experience officer of the Society for Human Resource Management Jeaneen Andrews-Feldman talks about the role of human resources in business today and wh...


S05 | E01 Mental Health Skills You Need to Know
#1
05/13/2022

Focusing on mental health in the workplace is becoming more and more of a priority for organizations and our people and our company bottom lines are benefiting greatly from this focus. As People Leaders and HR professionals, I think there’s been a gap in our skills training to really know how to best navigate this new world of work and that’s where this episode of the podcast comes in to help fill that gap.

In this first episode of the season, I’m going to share with you the top mental health skills we could all us...


S04 | E12 Burn Bright, Don't Burn Out with Jess Stuart
#12
05/06/2022

Society has set us up for failure. With the glorification of busyness and the pressure to check things off the list, we don’t have time to do the most important work: the strategy and innovation organizations need to be successful.

But there’s a small shift starting to happen, one that allows for slowing down to speed up. Because individuals and organizations are starting to see that busy mode isn’t sustainable. It’s a recipe for burnout and resignations.

We feel the need to constantly be busy because we feel like we don’t deserve...


S04 | E11 Embracing Neurodiversity in the Workplace with Chris Turner
#11
04/29/2022

You remember being taught that each person is unique and different and special in their own way. That’s still true. And organizations are finally catching up.

We know that we all react differently to different situations and we need different tools to succeed. Opening the door to those conversations not only supports neurodiverse employees, but entire teams benefit. And are more successful as a result.

This week on the pdocast, Chris Turner of Neuro Advantage is sharing what those conversations might look like and how to get them started. And he normalizes the differences we...


S04 | E10 Addiction in the Workplace with Joe Gardzina
#10
04/22/2022

According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 19.7 million American adults (anyone over the age of 12) was battling a substance use disorder in 2017. Imagine how that statistic has changed in the years since, especially as we've navigated our lives through massive transformation and change.

If your organization has any number of people working within it, there's a high likelihood someone is struggling with addiction. Some may be highly functioning, some may be getting the help they need and others may be staying silent in shame, unsure of the steps to take next. Addiction doesn't discriminate...


S04 | E09 DEI in a Silo with Andrea G. Tatum
#9
04/15/2022

Organizations know that DEI work is important work, and it is. But not just because of the racial reckoning in these last two years. One of the biggest challenges diversity, equity and inclusion professionals face is helping organizations to see how far the DEI work actually stretches.

This is especially true right now, as some employees are back in the office while others are still working remotely--maybe with no plans to return to the office at all. Workplaces are remote and yet everyone wants to feel like they belong.

At the same time, DEI work...


S04 | E08 Investing in Your Human Capital with Laura Bechard
#8
04/08/2022

Does your organization scoff at the price of investing in the mental health and wellness of your employees? It happens often but yet when you look at the numbers, there’s a big advantage to making the investment.

Just ask Laura Bechard, founder of ProVision Business Advisors, an organizaiton that works with business owners who want to create more work-life balance--for themselves and their teams. On this week’s episode, we talk about the valuable resource of human capital and why investing in them can increase the valuation of your organization.

And there are so many...


S04 | E07 Creating the Standard of Psychological Health and Safety with Mary Ann Baynton
#7
04/01/2022

Psychological health and safety is a hot topic but one that many leaders struggle with addressing. Thankfully we have leaders like Mary Ann Baynton to help create standards and frameworks that leaders and organizations can use to ensure their workplace is one where everyone can thrive.

Mary Ann has done so much work in workplace wellness and has helped countless organizations and government agencies in Canada develop standards to support employees, leaders, and organizations in this area.

On this episode of the Mental Health in Minutes podcast, we talk about creating a dialogue around coping...


S04 | E06 Navigating Cash and Compromise to Build Teams with Taylor Roa
#6
03/25/2022

Some organizations just rise above others when it comes to supporting their people. This week on the podcast, we’re talking to Taylor Roa, talent acquisition leader at one such organization.

What’s so amazing about this company, Wistia, is that they’ve made very few changes to their people policies and benefits during the pandemic. Other organizations have sprinted to try to catch up to what their people needed during the last two years; Wistia has essentially gone on with business as usual. That’s how robust their culture and focus on wellness has been.

As Tay...


S04| E05 Finding Mindfulness in the Small Moments at Work with Amy McCae
#5
03/18/2022

There hasn’t always been a lot of mindfulness in the workplace; you’d go to work, do your job, then go home. With the pandemic, people have recognized that there’s an incredibly deep connection between home and work. Partly because we’ve literally been working from home, but also because we’re not one-dimensional creatures. We bring our whole selves to work. As it should be.

As a result, it’s important for leaders to be empathetic. Team members aren’t going to check themselves at the door when they walk into work, and we can’t expect t...


S04 | E04 Values as Action with Lindsay Harle-Kadatz
#4
03/11/2022

Your values aren’t just what you believe in; they’re the actions you take toward those beliefs. And sometimes those values change because of new experiences, transitions, life stages, and so on.

Values in business can change too, because of world events and new knowledge available. One only has to reflect on the last two years to understand the need for company and personal values to shift and change.

When thinking about your organization’s current values, did your team members have buy-in in creating them? Do their personal values align with your organization’s values...


S04 | E03 Making Friends at Work, Not Just “Work” Friends with Daniel O’Shea
#3
03/04/2022

We spend most of our time at work, even today when so many of us are working remotely. It makes sense that we want to feel connected to our teammates and coworkers. 

But often, we don’t know how to do that. We’re not sure what to say when we see a coworker struggling so we remain quiet. That’s not helping them, and it’s not helping us to create real connections. Connections that go beyond work friends to true friendships.

This week on the podcast, guest Daniel O’Shea and I discuss the stigma...


S04 | E02 Overcoming Fear Surrounding Mental Health with Alex da Silva
#2
02/25/2022

How we approach mental health in the workplace matters, especially in the beginning. Do you find that your people roll their eyes when you introduce wellness programs? Or are you struggling to get upper leadership on board with making employee mental health a priority?

You’re not alone. Alex da Silva joins me today to talk about why obstacles like this occur, and I don’t think you’ll be surprised to hear that a big factor is fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of being vulnerable, and fear that you’re doing it wrong. But, he also bri...


S04 | E01 Coming Back from the Edge of Burnout
#1
02/11/2022

Do you feel like you’re being pulled in all directions, without enough time, energy, or motivation to get it all done? Not only are you missing deadlines and meetings, but you are feeling physically ill and emotionally detached from those around you.

That, my friends, is burnout. And it’s the biggest issue I see leaders and employees facing today.

I get it. I’ve been there, and it’s why I love having these conversations. So, today I want to talk about the warning signs of burnout so that you can recognize it before i...


S03 | E12 The Intersection of Physical and Psychological Health and Safety with Dave Ferro
#12
02/04/2022

In the past, Occupational Health and Safety has mostly been focused on physical aspects, such as harassment, preventing accidents, and violence. But in more recent years, there’s been a push to include psychological safety in their responsibilities as well.

And according to OH&S consultant, Dave Ferro, there’s good reason for this. When organizations create an environment where people feel both mentally and physically safe to come to work, they see improved profitability, better employee retention, and improved productivity. Dave explains the benefits of proactively supporting employee wellbeing, as well as how to start enacting chan...


S03 | E11 Collaboration Between Employees and Employers to Support Mental Health with Angelique Hamilton
#11
01/28/2022

Mental health in the workplace is becoming less of a perk and more of a necessity, especially now as organizations continue to explore Return to Work strategies in the face of the pandemic. It’s tough to know where to start when there are so many variables to be conscious of.

Angelique Hamilton joins me today to share why mental wellbeing is becoming such a non-negotiable, it’s impact on productivity and your bottom line, and how employers and employees can work together to create more psychologically safe workplaces.

She also shares some key advice: Just...


S03 | E10 Tactics for Overcoming Overwhelm with Dr. Allessandria Polizzi
#10
01/21/2022

When it comes to stress, people leaders and HR professionals tend to face a higher propensity for burnout and overwhelm in the workplace, and they aren’t typically well equipped with how to handle it. Unfortunately, the pandemic has only exacerbated this problem.

Today’s guest has experienced these issues head on, and is here today to share tactics that leaders and HR professionals can use to get past that overwhelm and burnout in a healthy and productive way. Dr. Allessandria Polizzi teaches us her unique resiliency model and gives greater insight into what leadership can do to b...


S03 | E09 Increasing Workplace Accessibility and Inclusivity with Erin Perkins
#9
01/14/2022

Inclusivity and accessibility often get overlooked in the workplace, but not always for a lack of trying. Guidelines and training can be inconsistent, and despite any good intentions, leaders may find themselves wondering what the best practices are for creating accessible workplaces.

Today Erin Perkins, disabled rights activist and accessibility educator, joins me to share how organizations can build a more inclusive foundation within their organizations and how accessibility can really benefit everyone. She answers many common questions leaders may ask in regards to workplace accessibility, and teaches some tactics that organizations can use to better support...


S03 | E08 Having Constructive Mental Health Conversations at Work with Melissa Doman
#8
01/07/2022

As the climate around mental health at work continues to evolve, one thing is clear: These conversations are becoming non-negotiable in workplaces around the globe.And while simply having these conversations is a step in the right direction, it’s important to ensure that the conversation are constructive and impactful in a positive way.

Today, Melissa Doman joins me to share her expertise on this topic and discuss some of the major themes in her book that really resonated with me. We hit several different points on having constructive mental health conversations at work, including how we ca...


S03 | E07 Building Resilience in HR Professionals with Kris Tierney
#9
12/31/2021

HR professionals have had a unique experience through the pandemic, and for the most part it has gone unrecognized. They’ve been stuck in the middle, pulled in opposing directions by the organizations they serve and the people they work with. It has taken its toll on their mental and emotional health as they try to navigate their way through the changes.

But it shouldn’t rest all on their shoulders. Kris Tierney joins me today to discuss how organizations can better support the mental and emotional health of HR professionals, and how HR professionals can effectively comm...


S03 | E06 Facing Challenges in the Social Impact Sector with Maryann Kerr
#6
12/24/2021

When you think of the social impact sector, you probably imagine that it is a kinder, gentler place than the traditional corporate world. But surprisingly, it might actually face more systemic issues and challenges, causing people to leave that sector in high rates.

Maryann Kerr has spent many years working in the social impact sector, and during this time she has seen and experienced her fair share of bullying, unsafe workplaces, toxic work environments, and fatigue. She joins me on the podcast today to share more about these challenges, and gives solutions that leadership can use to...


S03 | E05 Creating Sustainable Practices for Employee Wellness with Jennifer Moss
#5
12/17/2021

Do you understand what burnout really is?

Burnout is a symptom of chronic stress, and it’s a growing problem globally. As organizations, employers, and leaders, we have a responsibility and an obligation to our employees to prioritize their wellbeing. And not only is it a responsibility to our employees and ourselves, but to the overall success and wellbeing of our organizations.

As employees globally continue to increase their expectations surrounding mental health in the workplace, it’s important for organizations and people leaders to work together to create sustainable practices that can support that. Jenn...


S03 | E04 Reducing Stress and Increasing Motivation with Dr. Nicole Tschierske
#4
12/10/2021

We know that stress has negative physical effects on the body and eventually leads to burnout, so typically we try to find ways to help our teams manage their stress. But these stress management techniques are only part of the solution.

In order to effectively reduce stress, prevent burnout, and actually increase motivation in the workplace, we need to get to the root cause of the energy drain.

Dr. Nicole Tschierske joins me today to talk about how we can find the root cause of stress for our people, and minor changes that leaders can...


S03 | E03 Finding Joy and Optimism in Leadership with Brett Elmgren
#3
12/03/2021

Let’s face it, leadership is hard.

Leadership roles typically come with a heightened sense of fear of failure and lowered senses of optimism and empowerment. And while most leadership development courses and strategies do a great job at increasing effective leadership skills, they don’t really teach what you need to feel happy and hopeful about your role as a people leader.

Today, Brett Elmgren is here to encourage you to seek the support you need to find joy and optimism in your work again. In our conversation, Brett identifies several common challenges leaders face...


S03 | E02 Strengthening Team Relationships Through Vulnerability with Michael Vargas
#2
11/26/2021

Have you ever taken an improv class and played the game “Yes, and”? If you haven’t, the basis is that you build off of each other’s stories and energies to tell fantastic tales and create crazy scenes.

Michael Vargas joins me on the podcast today to discuss how the basis of this fun, and sometimes silly, improv game can help create connections and strengthen your team relationships in the workplace. By sharing your experiences, flaws, and personal stories, you can engage with your people in an easy, comfortable way.

During our conversation, Michael shares s...


S03 | E01 The Importance of Mindfulness at Work with Trish Tutton
#1
11/19/2021

Stress is an unavoidable part of life, especially when it comes to work. But the impact of that stress in our lives is manageable.

Research and data shows that when employees feel less stressed, organizations thrive. That’s why Trish Tutton is here to discuss why and how mindfulness practices can be implemented in the workplace to reduce stress and increase ROI. From what mindful leadership really is to how organizations and employees can each benefit from more mindfulness in the workplace, Trish gives actionable advice on how changes can be made.

But that change wo...