How Happier Employees Mean Better Business
There are a variety of ways that corporate wellness assists your employees in living their best lives and doing their best work for your company. Much of this is related to the physiological benefits of exercise:
- Exercise increases creativity. Aerobic activity stimulates Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF), a key component of growing new brain cells. The more creative your employees can be, the better they will be able to problem-solve, collaborate, and perform other vital skills related to growth.
- Exercise helps employees stay awake. This one may seem obvious, but it's worth returning to again and again. How much productivity is lost due to employees who get sleepy during the workday? Unfortunately, some employees who are hired for eight hours a day are actually performing company tasks for six, five, or even just four hours, often because they are tired. Exercise helps employees get better sleep at night, sustain energy during the day, and work the full day at the company without burning out.
- Exercise boosts the immune system. Nobody wants to be sick all the time, but due to depleted immune systems, some people get colds or other illnesses that last months. In an altruistic sense, you don't want employees to go through the drag of being sick. In a business sense, more sick days mean a loss of productivity. When employees exercise more, they are also giving their immune systems a boost. This helps everyone out.
Corporate Wellness Makes Employees Happy
Some employers who are new to corporate wellness may be curious about how it will go over. Will employees like it? Will they hop on board, or will it take a while to acclimate? The good news is that thousands of employers have launched corporate wellness programs to great acclaim. Employees love a variety of aspects of corporate wellness. It makes work fun!
- Employees enter a friendly competition. Everyone wants to be the best at what they do. With corporate wellness, it's no different. Groups of employees or individuals have fun getting into friendly competition with each other for fitness challenges. It builds morale, encourages teamwork, and helps provide an extra motivation for employees to work towards their fitness goals.
- Employees are provided with a value. All employees love special thank you's from their employers. Corporate wellness can be an extra benefit of working for a particular company. Fun challenges and incentives help employees feel like they're part of a team that cares about them and is invested in them staying part of the team.
- Employees enjoy the benefits even in the off-hours. Things like good office furniture, good lighting, and air quality can help employees feel good at work. With corporate wellness programs, these happy benefits extend into the evenings and weekends. When employees get more exercise, they feel good not just at work, but every day of the week.
Why is it a good idea to incorporate wellness in a corporate scenario? For the company, there are some obvious benefits. Fit employees are less likely to fall ill and more likely to have a lot of energy at work. They're more likely to give work their 100%.
From the employees' point of view, corporate wellness makes sense. You may have heard that people are more likely to get fit when they have company to do so. So when you see everyone else at work getting interested in wellness, your interest is likely to get piqued.
Corporate wellness is therefore a win-win situation for both, the company and the employee. Still, there can be a lot of resistance to it, because if your employees are not used to being fit and active, then a certain lethargy sets in.
So Here Are Some Tips That Will Help You To Overcome This Resistance
1. Make It Fun
People are much more likely to stick to activities which are fun as opposed to activities which are boring. And a lot of people perceive things like fitness, meditation and other elements of wellness as boring. However, this can be rectified.
- Motivation: Don't make it mandatory for everyone to show up at a wellness event because this only leads into grumbling and irritation. Instead, motivate them to show up. This can be done by offering free t-shirts or VOD subscriptions to people who come to the event. You can even set up a contest for the fittest employee of the month, just like people give awards to employees of the month. You can find a good instructor who jokes around but still gives people a good workout.
- Novelty: If you find that people are still not interested, ask them what kind of events they would be interested in, from a wellness standpoint. Maybe the folks at your office are more into aerobics than yoga. Maybe they'd like to try some type of dance workout. Or maybe they'd be interested in an office marathon. These are all good options as far as corporate wellness goes. You don't need to push people in one direction or the other. Let them do what works for them. Just give them a little push in that direction.
2. Find the Right Level
You need to make sure that the wellness event you're organizing is challenging enough but not too challenging if you're going to get your employees into the zone. If your event is too easy, people will get bored. If it's too difficult, they will feel discouraged that they can't do it. So you need to find out what level they are at.
- Start Out Slow: Finding the right level can only be done through experience. Start out with an event which is at a beginner's level, just to be safe. Then get feedback from your employees. If it was too easy, you could step up the pace. If not, then keep going at the beginner's level and increase slowly.
- Accommodate Everyone: You may find that different people are at different levels, in which case you'll have to go with the level of the majority. But if you can find an instructor who can do two versions of the same exercise, at different levels and show them to the class, then you'll be able to accommodate both. In general, if someone is at a higher level of fitness, that means that they already have a system which helps them to remain fit. So it's the beginners whom you need to motivate more.
With a little perseverance, you should be able to make corporate wellness fun and doable for your employees.
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