Here is a "Throwback Thursday" article that was originally written for publication in the Newfoundland Business News in the August/September 2013 issue. It is still just as relevant as it was years ago!
Technology is evolving and has changed our lives in ways unimaginable just a few decades ago. We are more connected to the rest of the world than we have ever been. We have the ability to share thoughts and ideas at the click of a button. More information is available, and because of this, new trends in our lives are emerging. The healthcare industry has shifted from primarily focusing on treating a patient’s symptoms to promoting wellness and prevention. Also, people are more aware about the importance of staying active and eating well. Arguably, the slowest on the uptake of this shift in thinking has been the business world.
Old school thinking causes many people to define balancing their life as separating work from home. Work is where you go to collect a paycheque. Home is where you actually live your life. Work is what causes you stress. Home is where you find activities that alleviate your stress. Companies like Belmont Health & Wealth are challenging this thinking and are taking action to change this.
“Balance Your Life” is a concept that encompasses all aspects of your life. Balance comes from being happy, finding ways to manage your stress, and having a feeling of security both financially and emotionally. This should apply to the time you spend at work as well as the time you spend at home.
Companies who focus on the Work Wellness of their staff reap the most rewards. A happy staff is a productive staff, and statistically less likely to call in sick. Employees who feel valued, and feel that their company is invested in them, are less likely to look for work elsewhere. Work Wellness creates a healthy environment that is not only noticeable by the people who work there, but by the customers as well.
So how does a company achieve Work Wellness? The following are some tips and tricks from the best in the business:
- Flexibility is Key. Gone should be the days of punching a time clock and setting a stop watch on your lunch hour. Life happens. Things come up. Flexibility can be as simple as altering a work schedule to accommodate an appointment to offering employees a couple extra days off in the summer.The more you work with your employees the more they’ll want to work for you.
- Walk the walk. It’s easy to tell employees “you should be more active and participate in activities that lower stress.” Implement a Wellness Program, and set aside funds that each person can use to engage in a Wellness activity. Whether it be joining a gym, signing up for soccer or taking a painting class, if you tell an employee that you will give them money to participate in something, chances are they will take you up on it!
- Catch them doing something right. Most employees are used to hearing when they’ve made a mistake. Take the time to tell them when they’re doing a good job. Your reward will be more good jobs.
- A little competition never hurt anyone. Come up with Wellness competitions during work hours. Lead by example and they’re sure to follow.
- Invest in them. Encourage continuing education. Let them take work-related courses. Sign up for a website like Linda.com and be sure to reward employees who take the initiative to better themselves.
- Talk to them. Ask what they’d like to see. Encourage movement within the company so everyone feels they’ve found their niche’.
It is as simple as this: Be the company you would want to work for.