Promote Employee Wellness to Help Build a Great Workforce
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of our lives, and the workplace is no exception. One area in particular has become increasingly important: employee wellness. Now is the time for employers to recognize the need for, and value in, investing in strong employee wellness programs. At the same time, it’s vital to understand that those initiatives must be approached in an entirely new light.
How has employee wellness changed?
It used to be that companies would provide gym memberships or hold “Biggest Loser” contests and consider that an employee wellness program. In today’s world, it needs to go beyond building biceps or shedding pounds. Employee wellness has to focus on overall well-being: not only physical health, but also mental health. And it’s critical that programs meet employees where they are.
Getting an employee wellness program started
Employers need to have meaningful conversations with their employees, and use that input to build customized, flexible employee wellness programs that address current challenges. That means offering resources to help workers deal with stress, anxiety and depression; sharing strategies to promote a healthy work/life balance; and even offering practical advice on things like setting up an ergonomic workspace at home.
Those discussions with the workforce should guide the development of an employee wellness program. That will enable time and energy to be focused in the areas that are most impactful to employees, which benefits both them and the organization in the long run.
Updating policies to promote employee wellness
In parallel, employers should review their internal policies and adjust them in ways that support and promote employee wellness. A good place to begin is by changing the mindset on sick days. Encourage employees who are sick to stay home; it allows them to get better and keeps the workplace healthy for their colleagues.
It’s also valuable to think differently on where, how and when work gets done. For instance, if it’s possible to provide parents of school-aged children with more flexibility while their kids are learning at home – and they’re still able to be productive, meet deadlines and get the job done – everyone wins in the long run.
Using employee wellness to build a great team
Everyone wants to work for an organization that cares about them, and there’s no better way to show that than by investing in employee wellness. Taking a common sense approach that’s both responsive and proactive is a great way to foster employee engagement and loyalty. It will help you to attract and keep the best employees, and those benefits far exceed the time and cost involved in creating an effective program.
In this day and age, employee wellness should be more than just buzz words. Your organization’s commitment to it can play a key role in building a great workforce that drives your business forward.
Need help getting started? We have the expertise and resources to set you on the right path. Contact us today and let’s get the conversation started!
Miriam Dushane, Managing Partner
Miriam is all in when it comes to doing whatever she can to help the Capital District grow and thrive. She is passionate about helping talented professionals find the right job and her work in the community is focused on furthering our area as a center of economic vitality. Miriam likes to garden and care for her pets. She is a member of an adult-only skate group where she rollerblades every week. She loves the Mets! And she is obsessed with vacuum cleaners; she really likes to vacuum and has 6 right now.