5 Ways to Foster a Wellness Culture in the Workplace
Nowadays, it feels like the modern lifestyle imposed on us leaves us no option but to spend most of our time at our workplace. In addition, chances are most of us have placed our work obligations above our well-being at some point in our lives. Long hours behind a desk and unhealthy work conditions are the culprits behind not only many peoples health problems, but their productivity issues as well. It is thus in your best interest, as an employer, to try and foster a healthy work environment and promote a wellness culture in the workplace, both for the sake of your employees and the sake of your business. While it might be easier said than done, there are numerous changes you can make to your office that will reflect positively on your employees well-being, and here are some of them.
Promote healthy eating
Healthy eating is key to our well-being, so you should try and provide healthy options for your employees. If you have a cafeteria at your workplace, you are in control of what gets served. Try to examine your current offer and improve it. The same goes for the snacks and drinks you offer. Vending machines with sugary sodas and treats with way too much sodium need to go. If, on the other hand, your employees go out to a nearby place to have lunch every day and grab something cheap to save some money, offering coupons to a restaurant that serves healthy meals would be a good idea.
An appropriate break room is a necessity
A place at your office where employees can take small breaks is not an option, its a necessity. They need those 10 minutes away from their desks and their tasks to clear their mind and refresh themselves. Therefore, find a secluded place in your building and design a break room your employees will flock to in order to relax, chat and foster better relationships with each other. Your break room can be very laid-back with bean bags and other comfy furniture, but if it has some amenities such as a few video games or Inada Massage Chairs, the effect will be even more elevated. Massage has been proven to lower stress hormone levels, so its something every office could benefit from.
Encourage working out
A lot of the times, guides such as this one urge employers to introduce an in-office gym on their premises. While the benefits of such a facility are undeniable, it is quite a large investment not every business can afford, whether due to a lack of money or simply lack of space. However, this does not mean that you have to forget about encouraging your employees to get enough physical activity. You could, for instance, offer free gym memberships to your employees, and you will see that many of them will appreciate the gesture and seize this opportunity. If its still not a viable option financially, a sizeable discount at said membership is still a great idea.
You can also get creative when it comes to getting your employees moving. You can introduce small challenges or even competitions that will make regular physical activity a habit among your workers. For instance, you can start a walking challenge where the step count of each of your employees will be kept track of for a period of time. Those who do best could receive some rewards that would further incentivize participation the next time around. The most important thing when it comes to these kinds of competitions, though, is that you choose an activity each of your employees is able to take part in.
Teaching and learning
Finally, if you have the means, you might also consider holding workshops that raise awareness about the importance of wellness and teach your employees how to manage stress and anxiety better. You can invite a healthcare expert or a nutritionist, or a different professional each time and provide your employees with valuable knowledge. You might even consider meditation or yoga classes your employees could optionally attend. Rest assured, their life quality will improve and they will feel grateful to be in your employ. And who knows, maybe you too will learn something new along the way.
A little goes a long way in promoting wellness at the workplace small changes such as introducing healthy snack options is already a good start, but if you can afford it, you should be aware that investing in the wellness of your work collective will pay itself off and will foster a healthy and happy work environment your employees will be glad to come back to.