American employees seek the flexibility to deal with personal issues when needed
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CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--LifeWorks, a leading provider of digital and in-person total wellbeing solutions, today released its monthly Mental Health Index™, revealing a negative mental health score among Americans for the 21st consecutive month. The overall mental health score for December 2021 was -4.6 compared to the pre-pandemic benchmark, a decline from the previous month (-3.7 in November 2021).

Working Americans believe full flexibility for all employees would work best for their team
  • More than one-third (36 percent) of Americans indicate that having the option of full flexibility – regarding days, hours and location – for everyone would be the best working model for their team. This compares to 19 percent preferring that all employees are together at the worksite and 16 percent preferring that all employees work fully remote.
  • Nearly one-third (31 percent) of respondents report that the most important type of flexibility is having the ability to step away from work to attend to personal issues.
  • When looking at other types of flexibility, 25 percent of individuals report that hours of work is the most important and 24 percent of individuals report that the location of work is the most important.
  • Nineteen percent indicate that the most important types of work flexibility are days of work (16 percent) and work attire (three percent).

Comments from president and chief executive officer, Stephen Liptrap

"Many working Americans are redefining what flexibility means to them. As flexibility needs continue beyond the pandemic, it is critical for employers to provide support at the individual level so that all employees feel heard and valued. Most flexibility needs are simple and can be extremely valuable to employees. Offering mental health resources is one aspect of support. Flexibility is another."

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Many working Americans believe their organization's CEO genuinely cares about employee wellbeing
  • Nearly six-in-ten (59 percent) of Americans believe that their organization's CEO genuinely cares about employee wellbeing. This group has a mental health score of -1.4, more than three points above the national average.
  • In contrast, 14 percent do not believe that their organization's CEO genuinely cares about employee wellbeing and this group has a mental health score of -13.4, more than eight points below the national average. Twenty-seven percent of individuals are undecided on their CEO's position on wellbeing.
  • Managers are more than 40 percent more likely than non-managers to believe that their organization's CEO genuinely cares about employee wellbeing.

Comments from global leader and senior vice president, research and total wellbeing, Paula Allen

"We are seeing a trend across the United States that mental health is being directly impacted by employees' perception of how their wellbeing is valued by their organization. Employers have been investing more mental health resources and have also been communicating the importance of workplace mental health. Wellbeing should be embedded within workplace culture from the moment an employee is hired to ensure that all employees feel supported, appreciated and motivated to perform from day one."

The full American LifeWorks Mental Health Index™ can be found here. This month, the report includes additional insights on the impact of workplace models on teamwork, workplace collaboration during the pandemic, the impact of HR policies on employee wellbeing, mental health stigma and more.

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Upcoming event: LifeWorks will be hosting Employers Connect virtually on Wednesday, February 2 at 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. ET. This year's annual mental health summit will cover research from the Mental Health Index™, uncover workplace trends from the past year and answer the question, "now what?" Members of the media who are interested in attending should RSVP to

About the Mental Health Index™

The monthly survey by LifeWorks was conducted through an online survey from December 3 and 14, 2021, with 5,000 respondents in the United States. All respondents reside in the United States and were employed within the last six months. The data has been statistically weighted to ensure the regional and gender composition of the sample reflect this population. The Mental Health Index™ is published monthly, beginning April 2020, and compares against benchmark data collected in 2017, 2018, 2019.

About LifeWorks

LifeWorks is a world leader in providing digital and in-person solutions that support the total wellbeing of individuals. We deliver a personalized continuum of care that helps our clients improve the lives of their people and by doing so, improve their business.



Heather MacDonald

Jennifer Farr
Kaiser & Partners
Filed Under: Business

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