Workplace wellness programmes

News: February 2014

Workplace wellness programmes

Workplace wellness programmes are pretty common in large businesses. However, such initiatives have largely been ignored by small and medium sized firms. The following are some tips for smaller businesses who want to implement a workplace wellness programme.

Solicit employee input

Periodically ask employees for their input and ideas regarding the work environment, work processes and their needs and interests. Host focus groups and ask individual employees for their input. Employees can also contribute to safety surveys, cultural surveys, etc. Asking your employees for feedback will allow you to create a programme that appeals to your people and focuses on their needs.

Provide educational opportunities and materials

In order to make your business a “great place to work in”, you will need to provide information to your staff and also provide educational opportunities. This does not have to be particularly expensive – local community agencies such as chambers of commerce, etc can provide educational opportunities for your employees. You can also provide regular monthly or quarterly internal newsletters for your staff.

Make your workplace better

Small businesses can invest in making their premises a better place to work for their staff. Simple things like creating an employee break–out room with a sink, tea and coffee facilities and comfortable seating can create an environment in which your employees can de–stress during their breaks. Business owners and managers can also create opportunities for staff recognition and reward through bonus schemes, employee of the month schemes, etc. You could also organise talks for your team from local experts in areas such as nutrition, general health and wellbeing, stress management, etc.

Promote community engagement

Many businesses promote community engagement as part of their CSR programmes. A workplace wellness programme can further promote community engagement by giving staff the opportunity to get involved in anything from local committees such as the chamber of commerce, local council business groups, etc. If your staff are particularly sporty, you could enter a company team into a local 5k or 10k run in order to encourage team building, health and wellbeing among your people. Some small and medium sized businesses also encourage general health and wellbeing by supporting staff with quitting smoking and fundraising for charitable organisations.