Workplace wellness programs are trending as companies look to boost their employee engagement, performance, and overall well-being. Even without a full-scale wellness solution, organizations can make a positive impact with these simple workplace health promotion ideas.
Healthy lunch & snacks
Swap the trays of catered pasta, pizza, or similar kinds of take-out for a make-your-own salad or sandwich bar. Offering a plethora of proteins and veggies alongside healthy fats like avocados and seeds will boost the nutritional value of your company lunches. Readily available snacks such as fruits, lightly sweetened yogurt, and nuts will fix the morning slump or mid-afternoon munchies and ensure an energy boost instead of a slump.
Another easy workplace health promotion idea is to take your meetings to-go! Whether you’re in the office or working remotely, walking meetings boost your energy and creativity. Grab your phone and your favorite earbuds and head outside. If possible, choose a familiar route around your office or neighborhood, or better yet, a park, to ensure your safety and improve your attentiveness to the conversation. Record the meeting or jot some quick notes when you return to capture the highlights and any to-do’s.
While flex work is quickly becoming the norm, if you haven’t already implemented a flexible schedule, consider doing so soon. More and more employees expect this kind of working environment and may quickly leave your organization if it feels too restrictive. Decide what’s reasonable for your organization and empower your employees to own their work. Standing behind and supporting this policy means keeping them accountable for outcomes instead of hours.
Better (or no) meetings
Evaluating meetings might not be a traditional workplace health promotion idea, but meetings are directly correlated to your organizational and employee health. In his book, “Meetings Suck,” Cameron Herold suggests that it’s not the meetings that suck, it’s us who suck at running them. Two quick ways to adjust meetings are, (1) Giving people the power to opt-out, and/or (2) Building a meeting-free day into your work week. These tweaks, among others, will breathe life into your employees. Empowering them to use their time more effectively will save their mental health and your financial bottom-line in lost work time.
Expect your managers to check-in with their team regularly. While experts differ on the frequency of these check-ins, the majority agree that consistency of doing so is key. Start by having your managers schedule 15 minutes with their direct reports and ask these two questions: (1) What are you working on, and (2) How can I help? Employee engagement is directly related to their interaction with their managers. For more on this, check out “It’s the Manager,” by Jim Clifton and Jim Harter of the Gallup organization.
While not a revolutionary workplace health promotion idea, encourage your employees to build movement into their workday. If your workplace has an elevator, consider putting a sign on the elevator door reminding everyone that stairs are a great option. Or see who can park the furthest away from the building, and give bonus points if it’s winter! For every hour of sitting, recommend ten minutes of movement. Take walks with one another or get up and stretch to improve physical and emotional wellbeing.
With mental health issues on the rise, a simple workplace health promotion idea is to arrange desks near windows. The natural light boosts serotonin levels and improves mood. Overhead lighting also affects mood and can impact productivity and wellbeing, so swap out those fluorescent bulbs whenever possible. Fill your interior space with colors like blue and green, which are more calming and mood boosting.
If you’re an employer, pick one of these options and implement it today. These simple workplace health promotion ideas are the gateway to supporting your company’s and employee’s health.