Over the last few years, we’ve seen a focus on employee well-being and improving ‘life at work’ – recognizing the importance of supporting the mental, physical and emotional health of our workforce. Afterall, our mental and physical energy drives our ability to think, act and create. Although offering a wellness program is often made with the best of intentions, these programs often fall short because one key element was overlooked – the role of the organization’s culture.
What does that mean? Well, think of it this way…If you tell people to get an annual physical, but do not offer programs that address health concerns or foster a culture that is inactive, how are you really helping them? At the end of the day, you cannot force someone to participate; however, the more you tie your program back to your culture and what fits within your organization, the better is will be received. Unlike the movie Field of Dreams, employee wellness initiatives cannot have a ‘build it and they will come’ approach. There’s more to it.
Don’t believe me? Consider these wellness stats: Although 85% of companies offer a wellness program, only 60% of employees are even aware it exists – and of those who know it exists, only 40% participate. To be successful, your wellness program must have strong leadership support, reflect the company’s cultural beliefs and values, and address the whole employee (social, emotional, mental and physical health).
So how can you weave your culture into your wellness initiative? Try some of these great ideas:
- Get Moving! Consider adopting stand-up meetings vs having everyone sitting as usual. Or conduct a walking meeting if it is just with one or two others. In fact, walking meetings are linked to increased creativity! Steve Jobs knew this as he preferred to conduct important business meetings while on a walk. The more we move, the more creative and engaged we can be.
- Skip the Donuts! Ok, maybe not every time given they are a crowd pleaser, but make sure to offer healthy snacks that are packed with the nutrition our bodies need when working long hours on a critical project.
- Reward & Recognize! Your employees are working hard on their wellness – reward them for their effort! And make it public to show your support and commitment to a healthy culture. Receiving positive feedback is a great way to boost emotional health.
The wellness of your employees matters. It is not only human to care about others – especially those that give us their time, ideas and energy day in and day out – but creating a culture of wellness will inevitably impact your bottom line – enabling your organization to be more productive, more creative, and just a great place to work for all.
Reach out to us at https://www.successfulculture.com/contact/ to discover how we can help your organization design a wellness program that reflects your cultural values to best engage your employees. Our SCALE Academy is the perfect place to start! Building cultures where everyone feels valued is what we do best.