Your employees are your businesses’ best assets. Without them, work wouldn’t get done, targets wouldn’t be reached, and as such, your business would struggle to grow and develop. It is for this reason that you should care for the health of your employees.
By doing so, you will maximize the efficiency of your workforce and reduce the number of sick days too. Your business will then be as healthy as your employees as that all-important profit margin should increase. So, with all of this in mind, let’s consider the ways you can encourage better employee health.
#1: Encourage healthier eating
You can’t control what your employees eat for their evening meal, but you can have some say in what they eat for lunch. Despite the expense, you could hire an in-house catering team to prepare your employees’ lunches. Or you could order food from a healthy sandwich shop in your area. If these options seem overly expensive, you could simply have fruit available for your employees to eat throughout the day, as well as bottles of water to replace the sugary juices they might otherwise drink. You could also bring in a vending machine containing healthy snacks in place of the usual chocolate bars and potato chips.
#2: Start each day with exercise
For starters, you could encourage your employees to walk or cycle to walk instead of using their cars. This might be impossible for those who live a long distance away but it’s still worth encouraging those who could. This is tricky to manage, of course, so regardless of your employees’ willingness to travel to work a different way, schedule in an exercise session at the start of the day. You could lead this yourself or you could bring in a fitness professional to hold an early morning aerobics session.
#3: Provide a gym
You could encourage your employees to attend the local gym, perhaps by paying for the membership to give them the incentive to go. On the other hand, you could create a gym within your premises by designating a room for exercise equipment. There are all kinds of things you could purchase, from exercise bikes to weight lifting equipment. You can purchase what you need online, from places such as https://www.ironcompany.com. There might also be fitness stores in your locale so shop around and buy according to your budget.
#4: Encourage breaks throughout the day
Your employees will become less productive if they are sat down for much of the day, and their health will be at risk too. So, schedule in breaks throughout the day and encourage them to move around a little. Ask them to stretch their legs by walking around the office or strolling outdoors. And provide a break room that provides opportunities for exercise, such as a ping pong table or a treadmill. There are also exercises your employees can do at their desks so encourage these if your employees are rooted at their desks for long periods.
#5: Care for your employees’ mental health
Going beyond your employees’ physical health, do what you can to care for their mental health too. Admittedly, some of the other suggestions on this list are useful in this regard but there is more you can do. Firstly, deal with any issues that could be causing your employees stress. These could include instances of workplace bullying, for example, or occasions when they have to work overtime. Manage these to make lives easier for your employees. You could also encourage your employees to use meditation techniques, or you could lead them in a guided meditation at some point in the day. And finally, consider bringing in a workplace counselor occasionally or have somebody on speed dial that they can call or Skype with when needed.
#6: Ensure a safer workplace
Health and safety have to be a priority in the workplace so commit to a risk assessment to identify any danger areas. You will protect your employees if you do, and you will minimize the chances of a legal claim made against you should an accident happen. There are a number of things you can do to ensure a safer workplace. You should purchase the necessary safety equipment that your employees need for their jobs, for example. You should also test electrical equipment with the aid of a qualified professional. Having a no-smoking policy is a good idea as this will ensure better air quality indoors. And there are other things you can do to improve air quality, such as providing better ventilation and placing plants around the workspace.
#7: Allow for remote working
You can improve the work-life balance of your employees if you allow for remote working, and this should do much where their mental health is concerned. There will be less need for them to endure a stressful commute too and they won’t need to be around any conflict situations that could happen in your workplace. Of course, remote working isn’t possible for every business, but if it is something that could be considered, you might want to plan for it. You may have put steps in place already, as many employees worked remotely during the pandemic.
#8: Be a good role model
As the person in charge of your employees, there is much you can do to inspire them. If you can walk the walk (perhaps literally) as well as talk the talk, you can encourage your employees to follow your good example. So, be the person who leaves the car at home and bike or walk to work if you are able. Eat something healthy for lunch and hydrate yourself regularly. Make use of the exercise equipment that you purchase for your workplace. And make the effort to take breaks throughout the day. You will feel better if you do all of these things, and your good example should inspire your employees to take care of themselves too.
All of the ideas we have suggested here can be incorporated into an employee wellness program. So, consider what we have discussed and take steps to ensure the better health of all your employees. They will experience the benefits and so too will your business.