Wellness Awareness in the Workplace by Cindy Stradling CSP, CPC
It is common for employers to create all sorts of motivation campaigns, including those to increase sales, improve customer service or retention rates. However, many employers may overlook one of the most important elements in creating a productive and enthusiastic workforce: employee wellness.
In recent years, hard economic times have required employers to cut workforces and reduce, or eliminate bonuses and raises. Today’s employees may be the most stressed out and overworked to come along in decades. Because of the high unemployment rate, these workers do what they have to do to keep going, because though they may be tired, stressed out and overworked; they know that they are still better off than their friends who are unemployed.
As employers, addressing the wellness of our employees can offer many benefits. A happy workforce is a productive one, and employees are happier when they feel well, when they get enough rest, and they learn to manage stress effectively.
Simple Wellness Strategies
Wellness campaigns needn’t be expensive. There are many simple ideas that you can implement that can help employees become more attuned to their own health and well-being. Some simple ideas include:
- Lunch and learn seminars on weight management, stress management and common health issues.
- Exercise campaigns that encourage employees to walk during lunch and track their miles. Incentives like gift cards or time off for the person who walks the most miles can help create a fun and friendly competition.
- Find a yoga instructor who will offer classes at work during lunch breaks or after work.
- Mobile massage therapists can offer chair massages during lunch.
- Bring in a nutritionist to help employees evaluate their diets to look for ways to improve their eating habits.
All of these ideas are easy to implement and inexpensive. Be sure to ask employees what programs they would like to see, and tailor your efforts to your own staff.
Employees Will Appreciate Your Effort
Another benefit you’ll see from implementing a wellness program in your office is appreciation from your employees. When you show enough concern about their well being to provide workplace programs to help them get healthy, they gain renewed faith in your commitment to them. Just knowing that their employer cares about their health and wellness increases their satisfaction at work.
Over time, wellness awareness programs can help increase productivity. Well-rested, healthy employees are more focused, more pleasant to be around, and more committed to excellence. Fewer days are lost due to sick time and doctor appointments. Turnover due to stress and burnout are reduced. As an employer, the time and money you invest in attending to the wellness of your staff will be time and money well spent.