BUSINESSES are being urged to look after employees on ‘Blue Monday’, even though it’s a load of nonsense, according to Jimmy Williams of Urban Jungle.
The third Monday of January was named ‘Blue Monday’ by a PR travel company in 2004, claiming it was the most depressing day of the year.
The theory was that a mixture of bad weather, stress, failed New Year’s resolutions, post Christmas debt and other factors meant the day was particularly unhappy. Since then, the idea has been entirely debunked, with some even claiming it is damaging.
But some firms are recommending regular mental health check-ins with staff as, this year, people will be suffering the gruelling effects of a third national lockdown.
Jimmy Williams, CEO of insurance firm Urban Jungle, says he’s very concerned about the wellbeing of his young team.
“Most of my team are 30 and below, working from home without the day-to-day support of seeing colleagues over coffee or lunch.
“We surveyed our team last year and about 20% of staff were struggling significantly with their mental health – this was very alarming.
“So, last year, Urban we replaced its social budget for a ‘mental heath fund’ offering counselling and yoga session in place of after work drinks. This does seem to have helped and the team are coping better this lockdown.”
Williams urges all employers to take extra special care of staff this January, especially as the UK is now in another lockdown.
“Whether it is Blue Monday or any other day in January, I urge all employers to take extra time to look after your employees, especially if they are working from home,” says Williams.
“I think we all know Blue Monday is nonsense, but we can pretend it’s true. Check in with your team every Monday and have policies in place to keep everyone going. As the week’s go by there might well be a few Blue Mondays and other days of the weeks might be rather dark too. Let’s just do all we can to keep morale as high as possible.”
About Jimmy Williams
Jimmy Williams is the CEO of Urban Jungle, which provides insurance to generation rent and millennials. Since founding the business in 2016, the company has grown to 23 staff, amassed over 30,000 customers and raised £7.8m in funding from private investors and VCs. Urban Jungle is also one of the UK’s top rated insurers, scoring 4.8 out of 5 on TrustPilot.