Building a bank from scratch is an enormous challenge. We think about it as a marathon, not a sprint. But across Monzo, our work-life harmony isn’t perfect. We all know how important it is to keep our bodies fit and healthy, but we need to make sure our minds are kept fit and healthy too. Like any exciting growing business, we can be so passionate about what we’re building that it’s hard to switch off.
Here’s an update on what we’re doing at Monzo to keep our minds healthy.
Mindfulness and mental health is important to us
Over the last three years we’ve been busy, and achieved much more than we thought we could. We’ve gained our UK banking licence, launched current accounts, and brought them to half a million people. This has all been possible because of our supportive community and our passionate team, who care deeply about what we’re doing.
Leaving the office doesn’t mean you’ve stopped thinking about work, and if you work remotely it can sometimes seem impossible to switch off.
At Monzo we have big ambitions, and it we want to achieve them it’s important that our team is productive. And the only way to have a productive team is to have a happy one.
Stress, anxiety and feeling overwhelmed can significantly affect your performance, happiness and satisfaction at work. If you have a good night’s sleep, you’ll naturally be more positive, productive, resilient and better at communicating. But on the other hand, prolonged stress and anxiety can mean someone takes several weeks off to recover. We’d much rather people work shorter hours and feel able to take enough time to breathe!
What have we done so far?
Time to get some Headspace ⏰
For anyone who wants to take 10 minutes out of their busy schedule, we have group meditation sessions every Wednesday at lunchtime. Whether you’re having a bad day, feeling stressed or just want to give your mind a rest, it’s surprising how just 10 minutes of meditation can help improve your productivity.
Around a quarter of our team work remotely around the world, so we live stream these sessions to make sure everyone’s included.
At Monzo we default to transparency, meaning that we look for reasons not to share information, both internally and externally. This openness has helped us create a trusting and supportive environment among the team. We now have a company Slack channel called #mental-health for anyone who’s looking for support, or who wants to share experiences that may help other people.
Mental health first aiders
When you don’t have someone to talk to about what’s worrying you or getting you down, it can have a real impact on your mental health.
At Monzo, we have a dedicated group of people who have been trained to listen. They’ve attended courses at the Royal Society of Public Health. If someone doesn’t feel comfortable talking to their manager, colleagues or even friends outside Monzo, there is always someone they can go to, who can give them guidance on where to find support, or offer help themselves.
The hard times can help us appreciate the highs, but you don’t need to go through the lows on your own.
Meditation app discount
We have also partnered with our friends at Headspace to offer the team discounted yearly subscriptions as part of their benefits. So everyone on the team can now access a huge library of meditation podcasts. Each podcast has a specific focus, whether it’s improving your self esteem, increasing your productivity, growing your confidence when you give presentations, or helping you have difficult conversations.
We’ve made some changes to improve the wellbeing of our team at Monzo, but we’d love to hear your feedback and ideas about what we can do to improve! This is just the beginning. Please let us know on the community forum or get in touch with me directly by emailing [email protected].