A healthy workforce is less expensive, more productive and happier. Unfortunately, most Corporate Wellness solutions charge an arm and a leg for their services. Here’s a list of ten free Wellness ideas that you can implement at your office today!
1. Encourage employees to bike or walk to work:
Biking or walking to work may be about all the exercise an employee need for the week. Make sure that bike racks are identified and available. Better yet, start biking yourself!
2. Schedule healthy events:
Meeting up with other employees outside the office is a great way to strengthen relationships. However, most of these events are held at bars. Schedule a hike or organize a group to run a 5K instead!
3. Swap out the coke for water:
I have a friend whose first job gave away free coke. He drank 10 a day and now has gout. Your employees are influenced by the environment you create around them.
4. Swap out unhealthy with healthy food:
The place where I work now frequently orders pizza for events. Even if you’re trying to be healthy, it’s hard to avoid the supreme pizza if you’re hungry.
5. Start an on-site garden:
A garden can have a number of positive benefits on your workforce. It will get employees excited about eating healthier foods. It will create community. Finally, the gardening is a surprisingly good workout. So, hopefully you have land or a roof to house the garden. If not, there are plenty of gardening co-ops around most cities.
6. Create standing desks:
Time spend sitting has been associated with mortality and other negative health outcomes, even independent of physical activity. That means that if your employees regularly workout, they still face health risks from sitting down while working all day. To fix this problem you can turn a bar into a standing desk area or add crates on top of pre-existing desks.
7. Encourage walking meetings:
Another way to reduce sitting (and increase activity at the same time) is to start holding walking meetings. Here‘s a TED talk from a woman who walks 20-30 miles a week during meetings. She also noticed that ideas flow a lot better during these walking meetings!
8. Encourage use of the stairs:
Of course, this won’t work if you’re on the 1st or 100th floor, but encourage employees to take the stairs if possible. It adds up over time!
9. Organize volunteering groups:
Wellness isn’t all about fitness and nutrition. Research has consistently shown that performing acts of kindness significantly increases happiness. Find out which charities your employees are passionate about (better still if it aligns with your company’s mission) and organize a group to regularly go!
10. Allow for a longer lunch break:
It can be difficult for employees to motivate themselves to workout before work. After work, there a ton of other things to worry about, and so it’s hard to get on a fixed schedule. Giving employees a longer lunch break (60 to 90 minutes) gives them the option to workout during the afternoon. Plus, it’s a great opportunity to de-stress whether or not the time is used for exercise.
According to Ann Mirabito, a Corporate Wellness expert, the number one pillar of an effective Wellness program is buy-in from the top. So, engage in these Wellness activities yourself and make them a regular part of the company culture! Employees can help carry a company and can be real assets to the organization, this is why giving out employee service awards can help boost morale in the workplace and facilitate better working conditions.