The term “wellness” is now part of corporate jargon with an increasing number of organisations adopting wellness programs for their employees. A recent report by the Global Wellness Institute indicates that ill-health of workers costs the United States $2.2 trillion annually. This amounts to a significant 12% of the country’s GDP.
Apart from the obvious physical health benefits, it has been seen that corporate wellness programs help boost employee productivity and morale. By making health and wellness part of your company’s culture you will be able to see measurable benefits quite quickly. Here are some ways in which you can do this:
Tweak Company Policies and Practices
With statistics indicating that 80% of people are unwilling to change their health behaviors, the onus is on the company to bring about a healthier way of life. A first step towards this is making health and wellness an essential component of the organization’s corporate values. These values need to be defined and expressed in detail so as to cover even seemingly simple things such as the number of ergonomic desks at the workplace to flexible work hours in order to keep employee burnout minimal.
Provide Inspiring Workplaces
Ensure adequate inflow of natural light and air into the office space by opening up the area with minimal use of cubicle dividers and walls. Encourage employees to stay clutter-free by organizing their workstations well and putting all unnecessary stuff into the trash. Mark out spaces for relaxation such as a meditation zone or a comfortable seating area where employees can socialize during their break.
Physically active employees have been found to be more alert, energetic, and focused. Help employees stay active at the workplace by providing sit-to-stand desks, conducting walking meetings, and introducing simple rewards for the most active employees (individually or as teams). Team building events can focus on activities that are fun while requiring employees to be physically active such as rock climbing trips, inter-departmental sports contests, group hikes, or water sports.
Facilitate Healthy Choices
Make it easy for your employees to pick healthy choices when it comes to food at the organization. If there is a cafeteria, provide healthy dishes such as salads and soups in plenty while vending machines can dole out options like protein bars, fruit slices, and fruit juices instead of chips and soda.
Last, but not least, choose a wellness program that is tailored for the specific requirements of your organisation. Disease management and reduced health care costs are just part of the solution. In order to ensure long-term wellness that is sustainable a more holistic approach is required.
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