As a business leader, doing what you can to help your employees stay healthier will benefit your organization’s productivity in a couple of ways. First, you’ll reduce the number of absences and reduced efficiency that results from an ill employee. Additionally, you’ll help your employees feel valued when you take steps to keep them healthy, and that will boost morale among everyone. There are several simple ways to promote better employee health, including the suggestions listed below.
Encourage Physical Fitness
There are plenty of ways you can get your employees to exercise more in their daily lives. Consider organizing a walk during the lunch hour or after each shift. This will give your employees an opportunity to stretch and get some fresh air, which will benefit mental clarity and physical health. You might also be able to arrange a deal with a local fitness center for discounted memberships. This could be the incentive your employees need to get started with their own fitness goals. If you join the gym, you can let your employees know when you’ll be going and invite them to join you. This can create a bonding experience for you and your employees, while further encouraging participation in physical fitness activities.
Offer More Nutritional Eating Options
One of the biggest challenges to healthy living that people face in the workplace is the availability of healthy foods and beverages. It’s difficult to find any workplace that doesn’t have vending machines filled with candy, potato chips, and soda. Even vending machines that have sandwiches and microwaveable foods don’t offer healthy choices. Consider adding a vending machine filled with fresh fruit, nuts, and seeds. Even if you have another machine that offers junk food, you’ll at least be giving your employees a choice. Similarly, buy a reverse osmosis water filter to provide clean drinking water. That may be enough to tempt your employees to drink less soda and more water.
Boost Mental Health
There are several ways you can help reduce stress, anxiety, and depression in your workplace. Your managers should go through sensitivity training courses to help them communicate with their teams in healthier and more productive ways. Additionally, you can partner with a mental health professional in the community, so you can make therapy available to the employees who need the help. Simpler ways you can promote better mental health include hosting meditation and yoga classes, bringing plants or scented candles into the office, or improving airflow and lighting in the work areas. Something as simple as adding a fan can immensely improve the quality of the environment for your employees.
Reward Excellent Attendance
A long-time employee benefit that many businesses have let go of was the practice of offering paid time off for excellent attendance. The possibility of earning an extra eight hours of paid time off will encourage your employees to take better care of themselves. They would much rather have that extra day rather than calling in sick and losing their pay due to an illness. You’ll find that this will be enough to encourage your employees to take a greater interest in their own health. As they begin experiencing the personal benefits that a good diet, exercise, and stress reduction bring, they will take better care of themselves for their own reasons. Giving them a little push with this type of incentive can help them take their health more seriously over a longer period of time.
There are many more ways you can promote better health among your employees. You can institute practices that cost little to nothing, or you can invest a part of your budget in the welfare of your employees. The degree to which you invest in employee health is up to you, but even taking a little action will have long-lasting positive effects on your organization.