What impact does the Mental Health and Wellbeing Toolkit programme delivered online have on employee mental health and wellbeing?
A Mixed Methods Study

  • Helen Jones

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis

Abstract

Background
This study’s aim was to pilot a Counselling Psychology informed workplace intervention to ascertain its efficacy in improving the mental health and wellbeing of participants. The catalyst for the study was the researcher training to be a Counselling Psychologist coupled with their Occupational Psychology training and work with many organisations as a consultant / trainer (which enabled them to also deliver the study’s intervention), where they identified workplace mental health and wellbeing as an area of concern. A review of available research indicated many workplaces have a significant negative effect on their employee’s mental health and wellbeing. The impact of employees reduced mental health and wellbeing on them, their organisations and in turn the economy supports the researcher’s position that this is a valuable focus of research.

Methods
The current study used a mixed methods(quantitative and qualitative), randomised controlled, between-subjects experimental design with 24 participants (10 in the experimental group and 14 in the control group). The qualitative data was collected from all participants through an online pre and post intervention questionnaire and post intervention semi-structured interviews with the 10 experimental group participants. This qualitative data was then analysed using thematic analysis. The quantitative data collected from all 24 study participants through online pre and postintervention self-report questionnaires was analysed using four quantitative scales. The scales used were the Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale (Connor & Davidson, 2003), Depression, Anxiety and Stress 21 scale (Henry and Crawford, 2005), the Coping Self-Efficacy Scale (Chesney et al, 2006) and the Warwick Edinburgh Mental Wellbeing Scale, (Tennant et al, 2007). The results of the qualitative and quantitative research were triangulated to enable the results to be considered concurrently and equally.The study participants were from two organisations, Platfform a mental health and social change charity and Hafod a provider of housing,care and support. The intervention being piloted consisted of four, two-hour sessions, delivered online to group of participants once a week for four weeks. The intervention was designed drawing on a range of psychological strategies and techniques including cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), mindfulness and resilience research.

Results
The study findings were that the intervention has a significant effect on a range of factors that collectively indicate a positive impact on participant’s mental health and wellbeing. The quantitative measure’s results (paired samples t-tests) indicated that participant’s Resilience, Hardiness, Meaningfulness / Purpose, Coping / Self-Efficacy and Wellbeing all increased significantly following the intervention. There was also a marginally significant increase in participant’s Regulation of Emotion and Cognition, and a decrease in their level of Stress. The qualitative results were equally encouraging, as all participants reported that the intervention had a positive impact on their mental health and wellbeing. The four qualitative themes that emerged from the data expressed the participant’s view that the intervention had a positive effect on their wellbeing, that the learning process was beneficial, the session experience positive and participants found they were able to apply the intervention’s strategies widely.

Conclusion
The overwhelming positive results from both the quantitative and qualitative research indicate that the intervention has achieved its aim of having a positive impact on both participant’s mental health and their wellbeing. This outcome leads the researcher to conclude that the Counselling Psychology informed intervention’s pilot results indicate that is has been successful in improving participant’s mental health and wellbeing. Therefore,despite the study’s limitations discussed in Chapter 5based on the pilot study’s findings the intervention warrants further, larger scale research which is also discussed in Chapter5.
Date of Award2022
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of South Wales
SupervisorPhilip Tyson (Supervisor) & Shelley Gait (Supervisor)

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