Making Mental Health Your Business – A Message to Employers

David Preston, Chief Officer at Shropshire Partners in Care, was kind enough to speak at Enable’s event last week for World Mental Health Day. Here is what he had to say about working with Enable:

“I’m really happy to be here to support Enable and to have the chance to talk about the really positive experience we have had in hosting a placement for the best part of a year.

As a not for profit company we are always looking for ways to add wider social value and following a discussion with Enable we decided to offer an opportunity to one of their candidates

Whilst we started out from an essentially altruistic position we soon realised that this also made terrific business sense.

We gained a committed colleague with an extraordinarily extensive and impressive CV, who in time has added a richness to our staff group, especially as she became more confident and engaged with others and began to talk about her life and experiences.

The placement has also provided a wonderful learning opportunity for another colleague just setting out on her managerial career.

Through acting as line manager she has learned a huge amount from working with and supporting someone with extensive experience gained working internationally at a senior level.  That sort of engagement and informal learning is quite wonderful although perhaps a less obvious benefit.

There have been some hiccups along the way, but I have to say Enable have been tremendous – intervening when asked in just the right the way, providing re-assurance directly and in joint sessions depending on the need.  They have always been calm, professional, and supportive.

I would say to anyone thinking about getting involved – you definitely should.

The potential positive outcomes for the placement candidates are of course fundamental, but there are also benefits for other staff members and the business itself. As a practical example, our placement cleared over three years’ worth of analysis work that we had been unable to find the time to do.

You won’t be on your own and the difference it can make to someone just needing a route back into the workplace and to become (and feel) productive again is huge.”