May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Veterans are intimately acquainted with having to learn how to not only navigate daily stressful situations, but also find ways to deal with the memories that linger from unimaginable situations because of their deployment.
Because mental health affects many areas of a person’s life, it can manifest itself in the workplace, therefore employers need to be educated on how to identify it and help the veteran employee who is suffering.
Here are six things you can do to build a better veteran/employer connection.
Use resources to understand the veteran experience. Organizations like PsychArmor.org have resources to help.
Take time to understand the individual veteran. Each person has their own unique experience. The sincere interest you take in each of your veteran employees will build a trusting relationship and provide key insight into their needs.
Identify how you can assist. Once you have understanding, you’ll be able to work together with the veteran to determine how you can best help.
Create a plan to bring out the best in each one.
Communicate, communicate, communicate. Continual communication is critical in moving in a positive direction.
Pivot when necessary. Slight changes to the original plan may be necessary.
Veteran don’t be afraid to ask for help.
Employer don’t be afraid to learn how you can help.