A survey of UK business managers has revealed how the pressures of COVID-19 have impacted their mental health with over a third seeking professional help, according to new research from NerdWallet.
The financial comparison platform commissioned an independent survey of 908 UK businesses managers. It found that since the first UK lockdown on 23 March 2020, 56% of respondents had put at least one member of staff on furlough, while 44% had made at least one person redundant.
Almost half (46%) of managers said furloughing or making redundancies among team members has taken a negative toll on their mental health. A similar number (45%) admit to losing sleep over the business decisions they have made as a result of COVID-19.
- 54% of business managers say the past 12 months have been the hardest of their careers
- 57% have enjoyed their jobs “significantly less” during the pandemic
- 52% have seen relationships with friends and family deteriorate due to work stress, while 49% have felt isolated and alone
- 37% have sought professional support for their mental health since March 2020
The research also revealed that 49% of managers have felt isolated and alone over the past 12 months, with 52% seeing relationships with friends and family deteriorate due to work stress.
The majority of managers say the past 12 months have been the hardest of their careers and that they have enjoyed their jobs “significantly less” during the pandemic (54% and 57% respectively).
Consequently, 37% have sought professional help to cope with the mental health pressures caused by the COVID-19 crisis.
Says Nic Redfern, UK finance director of NerdWallet:
“The pandemic has taken a huge toll on businesses. Understandably a lot of focus is on those who are furloughed or made redundant – such uncertainty about one’s employment inevitably causes a great deal of stress. But it is also important to remember that managers are not exempt from COVID-related pressures or deteriorations in mental health.
“Our research shows that feelings of isolation are common, while the added work stress caused by COVID-19 is also hindering people’s relationships at home. To that end, it is encouraging to see that many managers have taken it upon themselves to seek professional help to overcome the mental pressures caused by the pandemic.
“There are important conversations that need to be had within businesses across the UK. Employees at all levels need support for their mental wellbeing – even as we transition out of lockdown, we cannot ignore the heavy burden that the past 12 months have placed upon so many people.”