Prince William has called on businesses large and small to take the mental health of their employees more seriously.
Mental ill-health is the leading cause of absence in the UK, costing businesses nearly £26billion pounds each year – an average of over £1,000 per employee - the royal told a meeting of FTSE 100 company representatives.
Employers, he said, should strive to create a culture where it is as easy to pick up the phone and admit that you are suffering from depression as it is to say you have a cold.
Prince William (right), talking with Unilever employee David Titman, has called on businesses large and small to take the mental health of their employees more seriously
And the pilot prince praised his own bosses at East Anglia Air Ambulance for doing just that for its staff, who are often faced with horrific life or death situations.
He said: 'Work, as we all know, can at times be a source of great fulfilment, growth and fun, but also at times a significant source of stress – sometimes, if we are honest, to the point of its being overwhelming.
'As a pilot working with an air ambulance charity, I have seen first-hand how work can affect individuals' mental health.
'But I have also seen how an employer can create an environment where it is as unremarkable to talk about feeling a bit 'down' as it is to admit to having a cold.