Having a wellness program at your company can contribute greatly to improving the overall morale and attitude of your employees. The best wellness programs promote both physical and mental health at work and at home. With 30% of short- and long-term disability claims in Canadian businesses being attributed to mental health or illness, improving and enhancing wellness is more important than ever.
When it comes to your company’s wellness program, here are eight tips for ensuring that it’s a success:
1. Don’t rush things, and get input
As you plan your wellness program, don’t rush to the implementation phase without first understanding what your employees will find valuable. Get input from your employees on their needs so that you don’t present a fully formed idea that no one appreciates. An experienced Advisor can be a great resources to help you design your plan.
2. Lead by example
Remember that you can’t promote or advise something that you don’t do yourself. Always lead by example when it comes to the goals of your wellness program. Participation should occur at all levels of the company. Even if it’s something as simple as encouraging mid-day walks around the office – you be the first one to start! It can be challenging and intimidating for employees to feel comfortable with new ideas or be the first one to make a change, so it’s important to show them that it’s okay by taking the first step.
3. Don’t focus on weight
Many wellness programs put the focus on losing weight with office-wide weight loss challenges. This really shouldn’t be the main concern of a workplace wellness program. First of all, many people don’t need to lose weight, and they’ll be left out of the program. Secondly, the habits that you cultivate through your program should naturally promote weight loss for those who may benefit. Making the focus on weight too explicit might demotivate your staff.
4. Promote health tracking
Instead of putting the focus on the weight loss, you might consider promoting health tracking. After all, drinking more water, getting better sleep, and eating less calories are the actual habit changes that are going to impact weight and overall fitness.
5. Don’t make it too complicated
Your employees are already doing their jobs, and they won’t want to have to learn an entire new system or program that adds stress and complication to their daily routines. Make sure that your wellness program is as simple and straightforward as possible. If you want to add more or enhance it later and everyone’s on board then you can always do that.
6. Build a friendly competitive atmosphere, and offer rewards
A little healthy competition never hurt anyone. If everyone is game, you might consider amping up your wellness program with some competitions or challenges, and don’t forget to provide rewards for the winners!
7. Don’t contradict your own plan
Often, employers like to incentivize and reward their employees with treats of various kinds. This is great, but just make sure that you don’t contradict your own wellness plan by providing a pizza party or free cupcakes. This doesn’t mesh well with the promotion of healthy eating.
8. Don’t make your wellness plan a negative aspect of your workplace environment
Finally, it’s important to be organized and dutiful about your wellness program, but don’t make it into a burden on you or your employees. Your wellness program should be a release from the monotony of work, difficult projects, and overall workplace pressure. It shouldn’t be added stress.
Where Benefit Advisors Can Help
There are a lot of moving pieces to a successful Wellness Program, and even though the benefits one can bring are immense, it can be intimidating to jump right in and start designing a program that will be the best fit for everyone at your workplace. That’s where Bencaid Benefits Consultants and your Advisor can help – if you’d like to take the first step to implementing a Wellness program for your workplace, contact us today.
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