By Bobby Floyd, HHS COO
Success in this area benefits both the individual and the company as a whole. People who are more active, who exercise regularly, who have good eating habits, and who get adequate sleep tend to be happier. This is reflected in individuals’ productivity, mood, focus, and energy levels. In this way, prioritizing employee health creates an environment where both productivity and the quality of work produced increases. Organizations that create an atmosphere of health and wellness will likely see reductions in sick days and upswings in retention rates, since they are equipping individuals with the resources to develop a healthy work-life balance. This can prevent what’s commonly referred to as “burn out.”
Often, what is needed most is a company culture shift toward valuing and prioritizing healthy decisions. A culture of wellness in the workplace can be established simply by supplying team members with the knowledge and tools to make wise decisions. Small changes like furnishing sensible snacks, allowing for routine breaks, encouraging team members to take the stairs, and sharing nutritional information all serve as easy ways to encourage a culture of wellness. Encouraging leaders to set the example and garnering buy-in from influential team members are also vital to implementing this culture shift.
Many companies are driving change by creating company wellness programs, but these programs require large-scale commitment and consideration to execute well. To be successful, the program must appeal to participants of all fitness levels and backgrounds. One way organizations can do this is by providing opportunities for employees to participate in fun or competitive group activities such as healthy recipe contests, 5K team races, a company-wide Fitbit program, or friendly fitness challenges. These activities can motivate team members to work out and stay fit together. Keeping the programs lighthearted and low-pressure allows individuals to make their own decisions about how they wish to incorporate these healthy initiatives into their lives at their own pace.
Company health programs often face the same obstacles that people who make New Year’s resolutions face. There is motivation at the start, but a lack of participation and consistency leads to falling short of goals. This inevitable ebb and flow of enthusiasm is not a sign of the program’s failure, but rather a challenge to be met. This challenge is a signal for the leadership team to work on developing new and creative ways to keep team members involved. By developing new initiatives, creating fun competitions, and throwing in incentives, employees will be encouraged to achieve their personal wellness goals. Another way to continually motivate employees is by finding a good champion who is passionate about the program and respected by the team, and providing a platform for that individual to encourage his or her fellow team members.
As with anything, there will be setbacks, but this shouldn’t discourage organizations from continuing to promote a culture of healthy living in the workplace. Instead, by looking at their goals, assessing what went wrong, and making adjustments where needed, companies can still make their programs flourish by continuously adapting to the interests and needs of their employees. As time progresses, organizations will begin seeing a change in the happiness, productivity, and overall health of their teams.
To learn more about HHS and our approach to creating a culture of health and wellness for our team members, contact us.
Bobby Floyd serves as Chief Operating Officer at HHS, providing leadership and helping to ensure operational consistency and integrity for each service line. In addition, he works directly with job site managers to implement and improve processes and systems and to help increase customer satisfaction at HHS’ partner facilities.