SEA employees comfortable talking about mental health

Three in five employees in Southeast Asia are comfortable with talking to their higher ups about their mental health and wellness, a survey found.

According to the Mental Health At The Workplace study conducted by Calm Collective Asia and Milieu Insight, 62% of Southeast Asian employees are comfortable with sharing with their supervisors, managers, and relevant staff about their mental wellness.

Vietnamese employees are the most comfortable speaking on this topic, with 79% expressing comfort, while 62% of Singaporean employees said they were uncomfortable in broaching the subject.

However, 45% of Southeast Asian employees said that their company’s lack a culture of openness and psychological safety either does not exist, or is very, very poor. Meanwhile, 41% of employees surveyed said their company had a “satisfactory” culture.

“The term ‘psychological safety’ is defined as a ‘shared belief that the team is safe for interpersonal risk taking’, and psychologically safe workplaces provide a safe space for employees to openly share their concerns without fear of judgement,” the study said, quoting a 1999 article titled Psychological Safety and Learning Behavior in Work Teams, published in Administrative Science Quarterly.

Fear of being perceived as a burden (38%) is the main reason preventing Southeast Asian employees from speaking out, followed by fear of being discriminated against or judged (37%) and not wanting to be perceived as weak, unproductive or lazy (36%).

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Chief of Staff Asia