To mark Time to Talk Day, the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) has today published research revealing that nearly half of managers (49%) have never received training on how to manage mental health in the workplace. Following this, the professional body has also called for a change in law to ensure all workplaces provide adequate mental health training. 

Specifically the research found that, of the 950 managers in the UK surveyed, less than a third (30%) have received training in the last twelve months and 20% had recieved training but more than twelve months ago.

51% of managers reported that they have had a member of staff disclose a mental health problem, including common problems such as stress, anxiety and depression as well as rarer problems such as bipolar, eating problems and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

This means that over 62% of managers who have had a member of their team disclose a mental health problem to them have either never received any training, or received it over a year ago.

CMI’s CEO, Ann Francke, said:

"Line managers play an absolutely critical role in supporting employees’ mental health and wellbeing. Employers are already required by law to provide training on physical health and safety. It’s time the same requirements applied to mental health”.

The survey also found:

  • 51% of senior managers have never received training on managing mental health in the workplace, compared to 44% of junior managers; 
  • 52% of older managers (over 50) have never received training, compared to 42% of younger managers(18-29); and
  • 52% of male managers have never received training, compared to 42% of female managers.

Simon Blake OBE, Chief Executive, Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England, commented:

"Mental Health First Aid England training is being used by thousands of employers all over the country to empower managers to support the emotional health of their teams, and to be able to intervene if someone is struggling with their mental health its. Often managers are best-placed to spot changes in behaviour and performance that might be a sign that someone is experiencing mental ill health, so it stands to reason they should be trained to respond confidently and support their colleagues.

"We believe mental and physical health should be treated equally in the workplace, including at the level of first aid provision. It is therefore encouraging to see the Chartered Management Institute joining our calls for legislation to reflect this, both in our Open Letter to the Prime Minister last November, and again today." 

You can read more about how Workplace MHFA England training here.