How to craft a wellness plan from A to Z

Ragan Wellness caught up with Mark Mohammadpour of Chasing the Sun to understand how his company helps enterprises deliver on their well-being initiatives.

By Joyceann Garippa      
How to craft a wellness plan from beginning to end

Mark Mohammadpour is no stranger to prioritizing well-being … he prioritized his own by losing and keeping off 150 pounds over the last decade. His goal as owner and chief wellbeing officer at Chasing the Sun is to “empower business leaders to prioritize their well-being so they can shine in the family room and the board room.” Chasing the Sun aims to do just that by offering individual, team and enterprise-wide programs to deliver actionable solutions that can scale to companies of all sizes. Its custom workshops and programs are steeped in data and research.  

Mark Mohammadpour, Owner and Chief Wellbeing Officer, Chasing the Sun

In advance of Mohammadpour’s pre-conference workshop, “Crafting a Wellness Plan from A to Z,” at Ragan’s Workplace Wellness Conference, August 16-17, we asked him some questions around best practices, challenges and opportunities in the workplace well-being space.    

This conversation has been edited for length and clarity.

Ragan Wellness: What are some of the best practices you would recommend to fellow communicators and HR as they are rolling out new well-being initiative or just getting started?

Mark Mohammadpour: Everything starts with the employee and their relationship with values of the company. Ensuring everyone at the company understands those values will go a long way in having discussions with employees on their roles, which opens a dialog on how they should be empowered to prioritize their emotional, mental, and physical well-being.

RW: What challenges do you believe still need to be overcome in the well-being space?

MM: We must overcome the optics that employee well-being is simply an additive and not an essential part of a company’s business strategy. Data shows that workplace health programs can improve morale and organization and reduce turnover costs.

Building relationships with financial leaders at companies and showing the financial impact of a strategic and active employee well-being program should be a top priority.

RW: What opportunities for well-being do you see for your company on the horizon?

MM: Chasing the Sun is working with its clients on how well-being is a part of the entire employee experience. How companies talk about employee well-being on their website, in job descriptions, throughout the hiring process, and in onboarding can be a key differentiator for employee recruitment and retention.

Services for employees to support their financial well-being is another opportunity. Companies that offer services on how to help employees save money, invest their 401Ks, and other related services can go a long way to make people feel their overall well-being is important.