6 Ways Employers Can Promote Wellness in the Workplace


employee wellness.jpgHappy employees who enjoy coming to work and the office life that awaits them each morning are generally apart of a team that is flourishing. A positive work environment plays a big role in what can increase productivity and, in time, revenue. This kind of office setting can be created in a multitude of ways. But, at the end of the day, if your employees struggle with an unhealthy lifestyle, it can negatively impact them both in and out of the workplace.

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Employers are feeling the pressure with higher health-care premiums. Causing them to explore ways to improve employee health. One approach is to implement a wellness program. Adding a wellness program is a low-cost option that can have big results in building health into an employee’s lifestyle. Companies that have constructed a quality wellness program have also observed an upsurge in employee productivity, less sick days are used and there is a rise in energy levels. Therefore, you are not only benefiting your employees with this new lifestyle option, but the company will grow too.

Use these tips as you begin to build your own wellness program:

1. CREATING A WELLNESS CULTURE: You do not need to buy a gym membership for every employee to make a difference. Get creative!

  • Walking meetings, organized charity fun runs or walks, sending a group at lunch over to the yoga studio or an afterhours Frisbee game can promote team bonding as well as a healthy living.
  • Put a basket of “toys” at the front door to encourage daily activity. Motivate your employees to take two-15 minute “breaks” to enjoy physical activity. Passing a football or soccer ball can be a fun, and is easy to make happen. Keep the conversation lite, but you can brainstorm a particular challenge while you play. And, as I mentioned above, a walking meeting is a great way to get some vitamin D and exercise while being productive.
  • Place a “sign-in” sheet at the base of the office staircase. Reward the employee with the most “sign-ins”, at the end of each month. People enjoy a little friendly competition, and you’ll also motivate folks to use the stairs and not the elevator.

2. INCENTIVES: You don’t need to break the bank to afford a wonderful incentive program. You want to entice your employees to participate.

  • Healthy competition can be all it takes to get your team involved.
  • Incentives can include: a small gift card, PTO (Paid Time Off), a couple “early” Fridays (leaving work early on Friday) or a monetary bonus for achieving specific milestones.

3. LEAD BY EXAMPLE: When the “boss” gets involved the tone changes, it just does.

  • Managers who partake in company wellness activities will naturally raise participation rates by adding a sense of obligation. Managers are leaders and mentors. They can educate and encourage involvement by setting a tone of accountability that will drive results.
  • Set the tone, assign reasonable goals for yourself, encourage employees to set their own goals and provide support throughout the journey.

4. ENVIRONMENT: Create an environment that is conducive to wellness.

  • Ask your employees to leave a pair of sneakers in their workspace. This way, they’ll always be ready to join the team on a walkabout.
  • Our bodies were not designed to sit for long periods of time. These simple environmental changes can be all it takes to get your employees up and moving. Encourage walking meetings, provide standing or “tall-boy” desks, swap a chair for an exercise ball, and place shared equipment, such as a printer, on the other side of the office. Easy ways to have a big impact that will improve their physical wellness.
  • Vending machines and kitchen snacks can be healthy. Take those candy bars and soft drinks “outta” there! Make nutritious and wholesome options available for your team. Socialize and have team bonding events in the office monthly or bi-monthly that incorporate healthy living. Create a signup sheet for a “healthy potluck lunch”. This doesn’t have to be too elaborate or fancy. Again, it’s an easy and low cost way to get everyone involved while inspiring healthy choices.
  • Provide headsets that will allow employees to walk during their conference call.
  • Post a simple stretching exercise in a conference room or kitchen area. Stretching is an excellent way to get the blood pumping and not boiling from stress.

5. GUEST SPEAKERS: A wellness, physical trainer or nutrition expert can teach real-life and achievable approaches to healthy living.

  • Key speakers make known the information that’s necessary for success. They’ll provide the strategies needed to reach a desired goal, and a forum that is conducive for asking questions.

6. FULFILLING THE WHOLE PERSON: Stress can be the root cause of physical and emotional symptoms. Those symptoms can actually cause someone to further neglect their health and wellness.

  • Invest in your employees by getting to know them. Are you managing them correctly? Are they stressed? Do they have too much on their plate? Strategically and mindfully stay connected the each employee. Employees who are implementing a healthy lifestyle are proven to have higher engagement and productivity within the workplace.

WRAP UP: Improve company moral and lower turn-over rates by encouraging this companywide change. Empower your employees. Not only will you improve the health of your valued employees, but happiness is contagious. You will see improvements in the company culture. You will not only attract eager new employees, but you will also appeal to new clients. Everyone will want to catch the “health” bug! Now, go get started. Remember, your wellness program doesn’t need to be too elaborate. Target a couple new approaches a month to be on your way to a solid wellness program.

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Ready to take your career further? Email me: Allison Sweeney: asweeney@g1440.com

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About The Author

I’m Allison, content creator and blog writer for G.1440 Staffing. Over the years, we have placed thousands of professionals like yourself in many companies in the Baltimore D.C. area. Since graduating from the University of Maryland in 2002, my mission has been to help professionals like you feel empowered throughout the job hunting process. I know the job market is no doubt a fast paced world and I hope the insights found in these blogs will offer support during your career transition. My goals are to teach the best practices for resume writing, tips for interview success, and how to benefit from social media platforms such as LinkedIn. Visit our blog page to find the tools needed to advance your career: http://blog.g1440staffing.com/. Feel free to reach out to me directly: asweeney@g1440.com. I am always excited to hear stories or tips used for success from my audience. Learn more about G.1440 Staffing Agency: http://g1440staffing.com/.