Employee Health and Fitness Month
Employees spend eight hours or more in their workplace - a full third of the day. This means that a workplace has a significant effect on its employees' overall health and well-being. As the needs of employees change, companies have begun to recognize the numerous benefits to cultivating a healthy workplace for both employers and workers. Read on for ideas on how to promote healthy lifestyles in your company!
Benefits to Workers and Employers
No matter what work setting you're in, studies have shown that healthy employees are more productive:
- A healthy diet leads to a 25 percent likelihood of improved job performance.
- Regular exercise (3 times a week for 30 minutes) leads to a 15 percent likelihood of improved job performance.
- Healthy employees perform 11 percent better than ones with a poor diet and no exercise.
- Absenteeism drops 27 percent among healthy workers.
The benefits to both workers and employers are numerous. Healthier workers are happier, less stressed, more productive, and more energetic. Businesses that promote healthy lifestyles among their employees have higher employee performance, less absenteeism, reduced healthcare and insurance cost, and a more attractive atmosphere for recruiting talent, especially younger employees.
Health and Wellness Initiatives
Whether you're an employer or employee, you can take part in creating workplace programs to help improve the workday lifestyle of your employees and coworkers. Here are some ideas about how you can promote Global Employee Health and Fitness Month in your workplace!
Healthier Food Options: The break room and lunchroom are important locations in our everyday diet. They're where we get our morning coffee, our lunch, and occasionally, snacks or even breakfast. It's important to ensure quality, healthy food in these spaces, including:
- Healthy vending machine snacks.
- Luncheons and lunch meetings with healthy food options.
- Juicers or smoothie machines available as an alternative to coffee.
- Water coolers and even company-branded water bottles to encourage hydration.
Informational Sessions: Break up the monotony of the work day by bringing in experts to discuss a variety of health-related topics with your staff, including nutritionists, chefs, physical trainers, healthcare consultants, mental health experts to talk about mindfulness and stress relief, and even health insurance representatives to discuss the benefits of your workplace insurance programs.
Encourage Exercise: Offices tend to be sedentary, which is detrimental to employee health. Workplace initiatives can counteract this by getting your employees up and moving!
- Offer an onsite gym or weight room or onsite fitness classes.
- Start a lunchtime walking program or an after-work, intramural sports league.
- Schedule regular outdoor activities on some Fridays.
- Offer employee discounts to local gyms, fitness centers, sports facilities, golf courses, or activities like indoor rock climbing or roller skating.
- Sponsor a charity walk or 5K run and encourage employees to sign up.
Prevent Sickness and Injuries: Even an office setting can be detrimental to health, through sickness or repetitive stress injuries. Improve your workplace so that you can help prevent health problems before they start:
- Assess your office environment to ensure comfortable lighting and ergonomically correct workspaces to help avoid repetitive stress injuries.
- Educate employees on the dangers of repetitive stress injuries and treatments for them.
- Offer free, onsite flu shots.
- Create an initiative to help employees quit smoking.
- Disinfect and clean your workspace well, especially during cold & flu season.
- Encourage regular hand washing and make sure hand sanitizer is readily available.
- Encourage sick employees to stay home.
- Maintain social distancing protocols if you're still operating during the COVID-19 pandemic.