Guest Contributor

How Businesses Can Promote Health and Wellness in the Workplace

By | Sierra Powell

Savvy business managers understand that employee wellness and happiness naturally translate to a stronger bottom line, This is why so many organizations are implementing wellness programs designed to deliver a healthier workforce. Here are five ways that businesses can promote and encourage a sense of health and wellness within the workplace.

Encourage Physical Activity

The amount of physical activity that a person gets each day is a major determining factor of their overall health. This makes it important that you encourage your staff to get moving. You can do this in several ways. Many companies make the strategic decision to pay for gym memberships for their staff.

You can also encourage employees to take walking meetings or outfit the offices with standing desks. Another good idea is to offer incentives for hitting activity goals. You may even want to consider having a competition to encourage staff to make exercise a priority. The more that your team feels supported in their efforts to exercise regularly, the healthier that your workplace will be.

Provide Healthy Alternative Choices

All of the physical exercises in the world will not make a difference if your employees are also not making sound nutritional choices. Start this initiative by looking at what type of food and drink your workplace offers its employees. Perhaps you want to overhaul the vending machine options to ensure that there are healthy choices in there rather than just potato chips and candy bars?

You may also want to consider providing complimentary healthy alternatives such as vegetables and fruit in your staff break rooms. Offering healthy choices will give your staff more options. It is also crucial that you always have clean drinking water available for your staff.

Educate and Empower Employees

One of the best things that you can do to support a healthy workplace culture is to educate and empower your employees to make good choices for their well-being. Organizing a virtual webinar or booking an expert in a particular health field to come to speak to your team can equip your employees with the tools and knowledge that they need to make good decisions.

For instance, you can find event speakers across a myriad of health-oriented fields, including mindfulness, work-life balance, mental health, fitness, nutrition, and other health and wellness topics. There is no limit to the information that you can impart to your staff if you lean on the professionals to bring this information to your group in a work setting.

Provide Healthy Social Connection Opportunities

You will be more successful in cultivating a sense of health and wellness in your workplace if you are intentional about providing healthy social connection opportunities. For example, perhaps you want to offer a monthly smoothie bar for your employees as they arrive to work? Not only will this deliver a nutritional snack to start the day, but it will also encourage positive social interaction.

Other ideas include offering monthly salad or healthy soup bars that encourage people to gather together and enjoy a nutritious lunch. Or maybe you want to give your staff a Friday afternoon off to go for a hike together? All of these ideas will kill two birds with one stone, supporting healthy choices while also building teamwork in positive ways.

Do Not Neglect Mental Health

Many companies do an admirable job of encouraging physical health, however, they may neglect the mental health of their employees in the process. While some stress in the office is normal, you also need to be careful that your employees do not feel overly stressed. Being flexible with work schedules can go a long way in helping your staff to feel appreciated.

Offering mental health counseling is another good way to ensure that your employees are taking care of their emotional health. The more that you normalize mental health issues in the workplace, the more that your employees will feel comfortable taking care of their own needs before they become a serious issue. This commitment by your company will pay off significant dividends both now and down the road.

Your staff deserves to work for a company that values their health and wellness. These five practices can promote a workplace culture that embraces all of these values.

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