When an employee gets sick, it's frustrating for everybody. Every sick day is a setback in productivity that affects not just the employee but the business itself: colleagues who need to take on the extra load, customers who are left unattended and deliverables that don't get done.
Providing health insurance is definitely helpful, but it does nothing to help prevent illness nor to promote general health and well-being. As an employer, you want to take care of your employees and have them perform at the top of their game at all times. How do you give them that kind of support?
Perhaps it's time to revisit and refresh your approach to corporate wellness. Here are things to consider:
1. Educate your employees.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to health. Everybody has unique needs and motivations, different starting points and different end goals. These days, people are exposed to all sorts of often conflicting health advice and information from many sources, making it difficult to discern what is reliable information and whether it applies to them. Exposing employees to regular talks or seminars where they can learn directly from medical practitioners or health coaches can help them make educated decisions about diet, fitness and lifestyle changes instead of just going with what is currently on-trend.
2. Promote Annual Physical Exams.
The Annual Physical Exam (APE) is probably one of the most important yet least appreciated employee benefit. Many employees -- due to lack of time and interest, and perhaps even fear of medical tests and needles -- opt out of the APE even if it is often available to employees with HMO plans at no additional cost.
Instead of simply announcing the APE schedule and expecting people to go, it helps to give employees a better understanding of what the tests are for, the value of early detection of disease, and how to make the APE a way to track and take control of their health. This helps them learn the value of the APE and hopefully will encourage them to make time for it.
3. Encourage movement breaks.
Gym memberships are fantastic, but for many companies that offer them, only a fraction of employees actually use it. Especially for office-based desk workers and those of us who spend hours in traffic, the key is to get them to move as much as possible vs sitting down for hours during the workday.
Encourage people to take frequent movement breaks throughout the day, even if it's just walking over to the water dispenser or taking the stairs when going up or down a few floors. Think about how working out can be made more convenient and enjoyable: perhaps you can set aside a space in the office with mats and free weights for people who want to do some quick HiiT workouts before or after work, or encourage interest groups -- such as running, yoga or climbing, or fund court rentals for team sports.
4. Consider a health coaching program.
A health coach can be your employees' go-to person for expert advice, while providing a safe space where they can be comfortable talking about their health concerns. Health coaching is:
Holistic. Health is not just about weight loss or dietary changes. Movement, sleep and stress management are also key factors that contribute to a person's well-being. While much emphasis will be placed on food, Primal Health Coaching covers these other areas as well.
Accessible anytime, anywhere. 1-on-1 coaching can be done remotely over the phone or via messaging apps so your executives can make the most of their time while still receiving personalized attention. Group coaching, meanwhile, can be conducted completely online via Facebook.
At Primal Health Manila, we can help you design and implement a corporate wellness program to fit the profile of your employees. Contact us to explore ideas today.