I'm Abigail Forsyth. I'm from KeepCup, and I'm the co-founder and CEO. KeepCup is the world's first barista standard reusable cup. We started the business as a response to the disposable cup waste we saw in the coffee industry. Very fortunately for us, the business has been very successful, and consequently, we now have 32 staff in three offices around the world.
I first became aware of mental health being an issue at KeepCup probably three years into the business when we really had a disconnect between how people were perceiving the business. From the outside, it's a wonderful, sustainable, fun place to work and what was happening inside where we had the staff that weren't quite as engaged as they should be. Our attitude to employee's wellbeing is critical to recruiting the right people and building the organisation we want to be. I think for KeepCup, because we are a business which is about behaviour change and asking the people who buy our products to take a positive environmental step that the bar for us is a lot higher in making sure that we walk our talk in terms of how we treat people and how we behave as an organisation.
My role in creating a mentally healthy workplace has been in recognising what assistance we need to drive the business forward both in terms of people and resources. We need to be much quicker at recognising people who are perhaps struggling and not doing so well. And rather than wait for a more formal procedure you might see in a larger organisation, it behooves smaller organisations doing much more pre-emptive in their approach because there are often a lot of relationships within a small business and particularly one that's existed for a long time.
I don't think businesses feel particularly well-equipped to deal with mental health in the workplace. I think that sometimes there can be confusion about what mental health is and what your role is as a manager, so I think that the Heads Up initiative and the action plan provides some excellent signpost about how to navigate some of those more challenging issues within a small business.