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Leadership coach: Managers aren’t doing enough to support anxious employees—here’s how to start

By | Jennifer Liu |

Demand for anxiety management classes skyrocketed almost 4,000% in 2020, according to user metrics from the online learning platform Udemy for Business.

Author, speaker and Wharton instructor Deborah Grayson Riegel isn’t surprised by the dramatic increase. These days, Riegel teaches online courses on anxiety, stress and resiliency several times a week. A year ago, she got requests to discuss mental health in the workplace just once or twice per year.

“This crisis is still acute, especially since it’s truly a collection of crises. That isn’t surprising,” Riegel says. “What is surprising is that many employees feel like they should be ‘over it’ already, and many leaders think that checking in on their employees’ mental health and emotional wellbeing is overstepping, overrated or no longer relevant.”

Study after study indicates workers are feeling more anxiety and not enough employer support as the pandemic continues.

“Everybody has a range of challenges,” Riegel tells CNBC Make It. “It’s false and irresponsible to have our own experience, even if we’re finding ways to cope, and to project that onto anyone else.”

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