Calendly is focusing on Mental Health Awareness Month and how we can support the mental and emotional wellbeing of our people throughout the year so that they feel supported in their work and in their life. As Calendly has evolved from an in-office environment to a remote first company, we have had to tackle new challenges that come with working remotely. Burnout is a major risk factor in remote work and we believe that focusing on maintaining one’s mental health is one way to avoid it. As one of the co-chairs of Access at Calendly, I helped launch our belonging group that is centered on creating a sense of belonging and community for our Cal Pals who identify as those with mental illness, mental and or physical disabilities, neurodiversities, and or chronic medical conditions. Focusing on mental and physical wellbeing is a primary focus for this group, as we work to lead impactful and engaging points of connection for our members and other Cal Pals.
This month, we are hosting company-wide music therapy sessions that encourage our Cal Pals to take time out of their busy work days to stop, breathe and focus on resetting. Music therapy helps by activating cognitive, motor and speech centers in the brain, which can aid in the healing of trauma, mental illness, chronic illness, chronic pain, grief and much more. As a belonging group, we’ve hosted a number of these sessions for our members who have felt significant positive impacts from these sessions. Because of this, we wanted to expand this opportunity across all our Cal Pals. In addition to these sessions, we are hosting a virtual speaker event and a podcast listening party, both centered around mental health and wellbeing.
In continuing to build connections remotely and for our belonging group members to feel appreciated, Access at Calendly is providing “swag” in the form of self care items, enamel “Mental Health Matters” pins, and valuable mental health related resources to all group members in celebration of Mental Health Awareness Month. “Being a part of the Access Belonging Group helps me feel less alone in a working world full of technology,” shares one group member. “While it can be easy to [feel overwhelmed], knowing there are people who are just a connection away to help, by even just being a listening ear and supporting remotely, provides a level of calm and peace when sometimes life and work can feel like too much.”
While Access leads efforts within their belonging group community, Calendly provides support and benefits for all Cal Pals to aid in ensuring that every individual is able to focus on maintaining and or improving their mental health. One Cal Pal shares, “With Calendly’s health insurance, I’m able to see an in-network therapist without worrying [about] the cost, which helps me prioritize the time and focus for [therapy]. Our flexible PTO means I can also take mental health days on top of longer vacations throughout the year to recharge away from work. I’ve found I need at least 3-5 days away from work for my mind to actually stop thinking about it - if I had to count and save my vacation days like I have at past employers, I wouldn’t actually be able to take a break more than once a year.” In addition to these perks and benefits, Calendly recently launched a new offering through Modern Health where Cal Pals can access mental health services such as 1:1 therapy, group therapy and self service mental health resources at no additional cost.
As a co-chair of Access at Calendly, I recall having worked for companies that made it clear that they did not value the mental health of their people. I have witnessed colleagues being let go from other companies for taking leave for mental health issues and I have seen team members quit jobs because they were burnt out and didn’t have access to resources to get the help they needed. I am very grateful to now work for a company that puts the focus on their people and their wellbeing, and I am proud to be part of a group within the company that focuses wisely on the mental health, disability and more for its members. It’s easy to see the difference such efforts and focus makes in the happiness, productivity and mental health of all employees.
Have you taken a moment to consider how you will recognize and celebrate mental health awareness this May? Here at Calendly, we hope that you are able to take the time you need to reflect on your own mental well being as well as the mental well being of those around you.
*Written by Kelsi Chlovechok, Access at Calendly co-chair and Customer Experience team member.