Skip to main content

Telfer Research Aims to Address Mental Health Conversations in the Workplace

Abstract drawing on mental health with the phrase " Conceal or Reveal"

A team of researchers at the University of Ottawa’s Telfer School of Management has launched a research project aimed at guiding employer–employee conversations around mental health.

The Mental Health Commission of Canada reports that each year, one in five working-age Canadians will deal with depression, anxiety or other forms of mental illness. This accounts for about 30% of short- and long-term disability claims, which add up to over $6 billion annually in lost productivity, absenteeism and turnover

Professors Laurent Lapierre, Silvia Bonaccio, Jane O’Reilly, Magda Donia and Ivy Bourgeault will take a deep dive to assess workplace conversations around mental health. The team has been awarded an Insight Grant by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada for this research initiative. 

“Our main goal is to understand how managers can create a climate that makes it easier for employees to talk about their mental health struggles, thus enabling them to receive the necessary support or accommodations,” explains Laurent Lapierre, the research lead. “We also hope to help employees better manage their mental health so they can sustain, if not improve, their interpersonal relationships and productivity at work.”

Learn more about this research project:

Read the full press release.