6 Ways to Support Mental Health Wellness at Work
Sage | Jessica Fuhl | April 15, 2023
How can People Companies ensure they’re supporting employees’ mental wellbeing? Here are six tips on supporting mental health within your organization. Mental health is a workplace concern. In fact, four in ten adult Americans reported feeling symptoms of anxiety or depression during the pandemic, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.
Stress and mental health issues are having a significant impact on people and, in turn, on the economy. The impact is huge – both on the individual, but also for organizations, who may already be struggling with low productivity in the workplace (our research found employees admitted to being productive for less than 30 hours a week).
How HR Can Support Mental Health in Remote Work
HR Digest | Anna Verasai |April 22, 2023
In recent years, the prevalence of remote work has skyrocketed, with many organizations adopting remote work policies as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic. While this shift has brought about numerous benefits, including more flexible work schedules and reduced commute times, it has also posed significant challenges to the mental health of employees. As remote work blurs the lines between work and personal life, many employees struggle to maintain a healthy work-life balance and face additional stressors such as isolation and a lack of social support.
What Is Company Culture If You Don’t Have an Office?
   Workhuman | Editorial Team | April 14, 2023

Before 2020, under 6% of the American workforce worked primarily remotely (and three-quarters didn’t work remotely any of the time). By May 2020, that figure rose to almost 20%.
As a result of hybrid becoming mainstream, and staying mainstream even years later, many businesses and companies find themselves asking a pressing question: What is company culture if you don’t have an office? The office has always been an integral part of company culture, at least it was before the pandemic. It was where employees formed bonds and helped businesses thrive. Now, companies have to find ways to replicate that je ne sais quoi of the office remotely. So, read on to learn more about remote work culture, as well as how to build and maintain a work culture in a hybrid work environment.
"This conference is absolutely game and perspective-changing! The wide variety of sessions to grow and learn from are incredibly engaging, packed with powerful approaches that resonate and dig deep. It is rare to find a conference where you come out feeling entirely energized and ready to try new tactics to what is currently in play. Better yet, for those of us where we've made changes in our careers, we can see the evolution of where things were, and where they could go (or even didn't). Not only can I look back on my prior experiences and apply these newfound thoughts and ideologies, I am able to do the same in the current day and provide a future outlook for where we are and where we want to go. Life is about the journey and learning every step of the way. This conference has been an absolutely amazing experience, and I'm incredibly grateful to share this experience with my company. Just as life changes, so does everything around us. Being open to new approaches and ideas, we then open ourselves up to growth and opportunity. And being able to take this back and share it with others - you gain the great satisfaction of paying it forward. Such a profound and rewarding experience! Thank you for taking the time and dedication to making the most out of this event, and for bringing it to so many to share in the wonders."

IEC 2023 Attendee
Take Care of Your Health Throughout Mental Health Awareness Month!
IEC Sponsor EFR | April 2023

Throughout this month, embrace the idea of total well-being. While it’s common to separate physical and mental in terms of health, the reality is that they are inherently connected. Our thoughts reside in our brain, and our brain resides within our body, so how we spend our time and how we treat our body impacts our minds. This month, commit to caring for both your physical and mental health! 
All The Best Employee Recognition Ideas
Select Hub | Ritika Dixit | April 26, 2023
From an HR perspective, what keeps employees going? Do employees stay committed to an organization just for the compensation and benefits? Or is there more to the story? An often-overlooked key factor in the mix is employee recognition. But what exactly is it? What are the different types? Why is it important to your workforce management strategy? We’ll walk you through everything, including some employee recognition ideas you can implement in your company.
3 Ways Employers Can Help Employees Navigate the Largest Healthcare Transition Since The ACA
Forbes | Rhett Buttle | April 25, 2023
The end of the Medicaid continuous enrollment policy marks a massive health coverage shift, rivaling the first open enrollment period of the Affordable Care Act—and there is a lot that employers can do to help their impacted employees through it.
This transition is happening because states paused Medicaid and Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) eligibility reviews during the pandemic, as required in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.
Healthy State of Iowa Employees Initiative
Iowa Department of Administrative Services

The Department of Administrative Services, Wellmark, and our network of Wellness Champions are working together to enhance the well-being of State employees through the Healthy State of Iowa Employees initiative. Whether it's planting a worksite garden or encouraging ways to be active, we're committed to creating and identifying ways to support our employees. Watch this site for the Healthy State of Iowa newsletter and other health-promoting information.  
"This conference! It's like this was meant to be, it all fell into place just right. I heard what I need to hear, I learned what I need to learn and it left me wanting more! :) In order to help others we must help ourselves, that will then flow to others with more ease. Thank you for helping us help ourselves and be happier!"

IEC 2023 Attendee
Insights Into Why Fear, Anxiety and Purpose Might Just Make Gen Z The Best Entrepreneurial Generation Ever
Forbes | Bernhard Schroeder | April 26, 2023
Gen Z could channel fear, anxiety, technology and purpose into being entrepreneurially disruptive. There is a lot being written and observed about Gen Z with respect to life and entrepreneurship. Some articles talk about the lack of face to face communication skills. Others, the lack of focus. Additional articles and studies mention the high level of mental anxiety and stress that seems to be associated with this generation. Is all hope lost for this generation? Not so fast. All this ‘noise’ seems to remind this author of another generation that was told they would never amount to much, that their long hair and questioning of authority and rules would lead to a wasted life. Well, that generation of people, let’s call them young baby boomers (teenagers from the 60’s and 70’s), turned out just fine. So, let’s take a deeper look at Gen Z, their current shortcomings and their potential.
Is Your Return-To-Office Policy Flexible Enough? It’s Not Just About Location
Human Resources Today | Jen Colletta |April 3, 2023
Three years into the pandemic, the concept of workplace flexibility is nothing new for HR. After all, the number of hybrid jobs available in North America increased 350% between 2020-22. But as companies move to formalize their long-term hybrid policies—and some increase the number of in-office days—HR needs to expand how it thinks about flexibility: Location is just one piece of the puzzle, according to Christina Janzer, senior vice president of research at Slack.
At Wednesday’s Wharton People Analytics Conference in Philadelphia, Janzer urged attendees to take a broader view of flexibility—and reap the rewards when it comes to productivity, inclusion and building cultures centered on connection.
Reverse Mentoring: A Key to HR Innovation?
HR Executive | Jen Colletta | April 5, 2023
When Tawanna Myers goes grocery shopping, it’s inevitable: She says she always gets talking to employees or fellow shoppers and ends up learning their stories and sharing her own - creating informal mentorship opportunities. “I recently found at least three phone numbers of young people I met who said something like, ‘I was having a bad day and didn’t know what to do but you inspired me,’ ” says Myers, chief people and culture officer at Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, an organization whose mentorship mission she says “has inspired me to take that extra moment to say hello, to talk to someone and let them open up. I want to be that model of a mentor.”
How to Encourage Engagement Between Employees and HR
HR Brew | Massella Dukuly | March 3, 2023
People pros need to show employees that they care about their well-being.

How can I encourage my company’s employees to want to engage with HR?

I love this question. It speaks to a shift in the world of HR and, most importantly, how many HR leaders are currently looking to build, or rebuild, their relationships with employees. HR has historically gotten a bad rap.
Are HR Brew Readers Giving Employees Days Off to Address Mental Health?
HR Brew | Sam Blum | April 27, 2023
Burnout became a mainstay in the workplace lexicon during the pandemic, and has been entrenched ever since. Comapnies have offered various remedies to combat the malady—defined by the World Health Organization as a “syndrome conceptualized as resulting from chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed”—including granting workers organization-wide mental health days during times of high stress.
Friday Water Cooler: Productivity Theater
HR Brew | Sam Blum | April 27, 2023
A new survey shows that 83% of employees are striving to appear more busy than they actually are. When it comes to the state of productivity right now, leaders and rank-and-file employees suffer from opposing afflictions. Top brass might struggle with productivity paranoia—a term coined by Microsoft in 2022 to characterize a manager’s gnawing suspicion that remote employees are working less, even though meetings, calls, and emails haven’t lagged. Meanwhile, employees are meeting that paranoia by staging a bit of “productivity theater.”
Creating A Culture of Inclusion: Proven Tactics for Recruiting a Diverse Talent Pool
HR Digest | Jane Harper |April 12, 2023
Diversity recruitment and hiring practices have become a critical aspect of building a successful and inclusive workplace culture. By embracing diversity and inclusivity, organizations can leverage the unique perspectives and talents of employees from different backgrounds, leading to increased innovation, creativity, and improved business outcomes.
Are You a Toxic Aware Leader?
The People Equation | Jennifer V. Miller | April 17, 2023
We humans love a good label and right now, the word “toxic” is having a moment. Ever since it was highlighted as Oxford Dictionary’s international word of the year, quite a few of us have been noticing – and rightly so – that certain behaviors, policies and organizational systems in the workplace aren’t healthy. Love the word, or hate it, leaders need to be aware of what’s going on with themselves, their teams and the organization as a whole so they can eradicate the creep of virulence before employees “quiet quit” – or walk away entirely. 
"TBH – I’m usually that person who may or may not be going through the motions… Not this time… the #IEC2023 was great! Thank you to Nan Boland and the team. I actually felt some fomo because I couldn’t decide on which speaker to hear next!! See everyone in October."

IEC 2023 Attendee Bethe Hlas
14 Mental Health Awareness Month Activities for Employees
March 17, 2023 | Outback Team Building

Spread mental health awareness in the workplace, show employees you care for their well-being, and boost company culture by holding activities for Mental Health Awareness Month. As Mental Awareness Month approaches in May, it’s a perfect time to highlight that there’s something organizations need to pay attention to: 76% of employees now say that mental health benefits are critical when assessing new job opportunities. Even if your company does not have mental health benefits yet, you can still support your team by holding some of these Mental Health Awareness Month activities for employees.
Why Employers Play A Pivotal Role In Employee Mental Health
Iowa Association of Business & Industry | David Wetzler | 2021

We have all heard it before, but it is worth revisiting; employees are an organization’s most valuable asset. Employees are the engines that run your organization’s vision, the brand ambassadors that represent you outside of the office, and the day-to-day face with which your clients interact. On top of that, American employees spend more than 90,000 hours at work throughout their lifetime. So it should be no surprise that companies should play a significant role in fostering good mental health for their employees, protecting this precious asset.
"If you are looking to connect with like-minded HR people over quality, relevant content, you've found the conference for you. I will absolutely attend again."

IEC 2023 Attendee

These are the most frequently requested U.S. Department of Labor forms. You can complete some forms online, while you can download and print all others.

Temporary Lawful Permanent Residents (LPR) Status Documentation
USCIS field offices recently started delivering Forms I-94 with ADIT (temporary I-551) stamps as temporary evidence of LPR status without requiring an in-person appearance at the field office. With this new operational process, USCIS has added more ways for applicants to obtain proof of status. This alternate Form I-94 with an ADIT stamp is an acceptable List A receipt for Form I-9 and E-Verify.
"I've planned enough events to know that there were likely about a thousand random things that went awry behind the scenes, but from a participant perspective, it was all extremely well organized and smooth. The people helping were awesome and helpful. The location was convenient and great. And it flowed really smoothly. Overall, a good experience."
IEC 2023 Attendee
Want to provide content for this newsletter distributed to 30k+ local business professionals?
OSHA's online newsletter provides the latest news about enforcement actions, rulemaking, outreach activities, compliance assistance, and training and educational resources.
Join more than 380,000 subscribers who rely on QuickTakes for information about workplace safety and health. QT is free and distributed twice monthly. Starting in 2018, QuickTakes subscribers began receiving occasional "Did You Know?" messages informing them of OSHA safety resources.

"It was a HUGE thing for me to get to go again this year. Grateful to you for putting it together and it was still amazing as always!"
IEC 2023 Attendee
For years the conference has been covering Mental Health topics. The team works year-round to find the best speakers to engage, educate & help the attendees leave with an arsenal of tools & knowledge to bring back to the workplace & implement into your daily work life. Mental wellness has taken such a forefront in our everyday lives, never has it been more important than today.

Thank you to these past speakers who have loaned their mental health expertise & experiences to our valued attendees:

David Woods Bartley
Sonja Wasden
Ron Dubin
Ramona Wink
Desi Payne
Ronee Anderson
Beth Shelton
Lisa Even
Barb Ranck
Sarah Noll Wilson
Jason Haglund
Renee Schultz

Iowa Employment Conference will continue to contribute to the education & awareness of mental health in the workplace by seeking out powerful experts who provide relevant topics & content. Together we can make a difference.
"I had such a great time today presenting at the IEC! Wonderful group of people and lots of growing together. Thanks, Nan, for having me there another year!"

IEC 2023 Speaker Gilmara Vila Nova-Mitchell

"I think I have been coming for 5 years or so and this one was the absolute very best! Thank you for helping us be happier!"

IEC 2023 Attendee
The IEC article library is growing monthly with valuable information relevant to the ever-changing work environment. Check the website frequently for updates. If you have something important for our readers to benefit from, reach out to us to be included in the next newsletter or article library!
"I've made some really great professional and personal connections at this conference, I always learn new things and it helps remind me why I love doing what I do!"

IEC 2023 Attendee
"This is my 4th year attending the Iowa Employment Conference. Each year the program gets better and better. I come home motivated and energized with plenty of new ideas."
IEC 2023 Attendee Mindy Webb Todd, CFO The Dana Company
The conference would like to highlight & thank the following sponsors who are on the forefront of the mental health crisis:
"The conference is well run, well organized, and professional in every way. Thank you for an outstanding event."
IEC 2023 Speaker Todd Saffell
THANK YOU to all 2023 Conference Sponsors!

Sponsor support is integral in continuing the growth, quality & integrity of the continuing education unique to this conference year after year. You are appreciated!
"This was my first experience attending this conference and I thought it was just a terrific balance of valuable content and sponsor/participant interactions. Very well managed by Nan and team."
IEC 2023 Sponsor
"Your conference is the best conference we attend. We sponsor every year." 

Spring & Fall IEC Sponsor Delta Dental Iowa Representative Dave Zahn

Looking to move forward with your career? Check out the amazing opportunities our sponsors have to offer within their organizations. 

"Really wonderful conversations with those participants who were engaged enough to stop by our booth to learn how they might implement a volunteer, team-building activity."

IEC 2023 Sponsor
By definition, Servant Leadership is a leadership philosophy in which the goal of the leader is to serve. If you are in a place where your talent and skills will help others, by all means, use them. We are proud of the work our leaders have done and hope that if you are in a place to serve, you choose to step up.
Do you know someone in your HR department (or company-wide) who deserves to be recognized for making a positive impact in your company from day to day??

Whether personal or professional, in a big or a small way, we all know those people who go above & beyond for the greater good.

We want to help these everyday (H)eroes be (R)ecognized! Send your nominations to us & one deserving person each month leading up to the current conference will be selected to receive a $50 VISA gift card! We will announce the winner in the following month's newsletters.
If you or someone you know is struggling, you are not alone. There are many supports, services and treatment options that may help. A change in behavior or mood may be the early warning signs of a mental health condition and should never be ignored.
Eating Well for Mental Health
Sutter Health

Consuming fewer processed foods can lead to better brain and emotional health.
From a young age, we’re taught that eating well helps us look and feel our physical best. What we’re not always told is that good nutrition significantly affects our mental health, too. A healthy, well-balanced diet can help us think clearly and feel more alert. It can also improve concentration and attention span. Conversely, an inadequate diet can lead to fatigue, impaired decision-making, and can slow down reaction time. In fact, a poor diet can actually aggravate, and may even lead to, stress and depression.
Along with advocating for mental health in the month of May, GBM is another cause very close to our hearts...

Cancer is brutal. Period. End of sentence. Brain cancer is a heartbreaking reminder that forces you to come to terms with the fact that life is so short.

My husband's only sibling, Jerry, died two years ago in July of 2021 of Glioblastoma Multiforme, brain cancer. There is no cure for this type of brain cancer.

We read everything we could find on GBM. We had many concerns that Jerry's brain could do horrible things and could dramatically affect his feelings, emotions and change him at his core. The picture in the middle below shows Jerry's personality shined through despite cancer doing its thing. Jerry was a glowing example of GRACE BEYOND MEASURE.

Enjoy life. Criticize less. Stop judging others for you have no idea what they are going through.

We appreciate you and ask that you show grace every day, all day.

Nan and the team at the Iowa Employment Conference

Jerry & Nan June 2021
Jerry proving
Grace Beyond Measure
Jerry & Brian
(Nan's husband)