Stephen Whitton is a Speaker, Social Entrepreneur, Influencer, Mental Health Warrior, and survivor who has been speaking up for mental health in masculine environments.
Stephen is Founder of [M]enable – the global movement for mental health support in the Automotive Sector. After a successful career spanning 35 years in the industry, with numerous roles from Salesman to Executive Director, he is a renowned authority on employee well-being to achieve results.
In a variation on his talks on just mental health, Stephen has developed a talk about Mental Wealth.
In these troubled times it’s easy to understand how our stresses and anxieties are at unprecedented levels. Since the Pandemic, Mental Health has become a far more accepted and talked about challenge for both the individual and organisations – we still have a long way to go through to remove the stigma and break the silence. In service of this agenda, Stephen has tweaked the language from Mental Health to Mental Wealth and in so doing has raised more than a few eyebrows of intrigue and interest.
When we think of Mental Health (which we all have by the way, just like physical health) it can conjure up connotations of darkness, depression, anxiety and stress – and it’s pleasing to see that many organisations are taking very positive steps to recognise their part in contributing to mental health issues and put in place processes and support to help their teams. BUT, by changing the emphasis from Mental Health to Mental Wealth, we begin to explore the investment that we (individuals and groups) make in ensuring that people are ok. We see exploration of ‘how do I create psychological safety?’ We feel a sense of belonging, of contributing to a common purpose and supporting each other with encouragement and space to have ’self-care’ along the way!
Stephen has found that the use of the word ‘wealth’ instead conjures up a link to returns, growth, performance and opportunity. However, there’s work to do! Cultures need to be examined and working practices, including some of those in-grained, long term habits, need to be addressed. Stephen sums this up with one phrase for leaders to keep in mind – ‘people perform well, when they feel good about themselves’
Stephen is proudly sharing his story, from lifetime in a performance driven sector in service of helping others (especially leaders and managers) to create a mental wealth in their business that is commensurate with the business wealth they aspire to!