Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Jason Finucan’s Journey to Finding a Stigma-Free Life, and the Connection Between Higher ROI and Workplace Mental Health

Last updated Wednesday, February 7, 2024 11:53 ET

StigmaZero’s Jason Finucan shares his experience with mental health stigma and how to overcome it at home and in the workplace.

Quebec, Canada, 02/07/2024 / SubmitMyPR /

Caption: StigmaZero logo.

As stated in a scientifically researched whitepaper co-written by Jason Finucan and Sarah Nogues, a Master’s candidate in UQAM’s School of Management Sciences, and a human resources specialist, 29% of Canadians reported their work as being stressful, and 55% of employees with depression would not disclose their illness to their manager. Finucan and Nogues also observed that the Canadian economy loses at least $50bn yearly due to work days missed because of mental illness.

Lost focus, lack of productivity, and presenteeism are only a few of the significant consequences of mental health struggles and mental illness, all of which majorly affect workspace productivity, and, as a result, profits. As portrayed in a study conducted by StigmaZero, 1 in 4 people experience poor mental health at least once in their lifetime, 62% of missed work days can be attributed to poor mental health, and there’s been a 15 to 20% increase in global rates of anxiety and depression in the last decade. The study also shows that a US-based company experienced a 302% ROI increase over two years after introducing programs reducing mental health stigma in the workplace.

Mental illness is talked about more and more these days, and each year mental health awareness grows. If it’s becoming more common and acceptable to talk about it, and even companies profit from taking action, why aren’t more people seeking help?

Having experienced a mental illness himself, Jason Finucan is no stranger to the matter. He’s also very familiar with the stigma surrounding it, as he once fell victim to it as well. Finucan was hospitalized in 2005 because of his bipolar disorder, after continuously refusing to get help for 3 years. Fear of judgment, being perceived as weak, and his own misconceptions were only a few reasons behind his decision.

Caption: Jason Finucan, founder of StigmaZero.

In his memoir, Jason: 1 | Stigma: 0, My Battle with Mental Illness at Home and in the Workplace, Jason compares the differences he felt while dealing with a physical and mental illness. Having had a heart defect leading to open heart surgery when he was 12 years old, Jason has survived both major mental and physical conditions. The tremendous support he received while fighting his heart disease is what made this time easier, and it’s exactly what was missing during his mental health fight. With fear of people’s perception, Finucan struggled and refused to get help because of stigma.

After surviving hospitalization, Jason devoted his life to spreading awareness about mental health and began volunteer work that he continued until 2014. Then his wife suggested he should use his drive and devotion to the cause, and start a company. In 2015 StigmaZero was born. Created out of passion and with a mission to de-stigmatize mental illness, StigmaZero has been providing engaging, effective training to reduce mental health stigma in workplaces ever since.

StigmaZero offers inspirational keynotes, online training, coaching and consulting, along with well-educated instructors, Jason being one of them. Having experience working with corporations, small businesses, non-profit organizations, and many others, StigmaZero accommodates all businesses, no matter their industry or their size. Offering both inspirational talks and hands-on training, Jason Finucan shares his experience to help people on both emotional and practical levels.

StigmaZero offers group exercises, homework sheets, and training sections specifically for managers, HR, and senior and leader resources, ensuring Jason’s message is accessible to everyone. StigmaZero’s main goal is to help reduce and eventually fully remove mental health stigma in the corporate world, which will result in higher productivity, fewer work days missed, and a more inclusive environment for employees. Ending stigma is not only good for employee’s well-being but also for generating higher ROI over time.

Even though Jason is now a successful business owner, his volunteer work never really ended. He admits he gives away more copies of his book than he sells because his real goal is spreading awareness and ensuring that society is equally as empathetic towards people with mental illnesses as they are toward physical illnesses.

Jason’s life mission is to highlight that mental health stigma should be socially unacceptable, not mental illness itself. That’s why his programs are competitively priced to ensure all businesses can educate their employees about mental health stigma.

As said by Jason Finucan, “I believe not prioritizing the mental health of your workforce is a mistake. Even if you don't go with StigmaZero, I implore you to institute mental health training. It's needed. It's vital. And it will improve your bottom line.”

Media Contact

Name: Jason Finucan

Email: [email protected]

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