How wellness can bolster productivity and engagement

Try these handful of simple ideas to get your staffers moving toward better health.

By Elizabeth Baskin      

Developing a fitness habit can take up to 21 to 66 days of daily repetition. 

As everyone’s wellness resolutions start to fade this time of year, now is the perfect time to reignite and refurbish your workplace wellness program, even if everyone is still working from home.

Helping your employees stay happy and healthy leads to more engaged and productive performance. It can also help your bottom line. WorkDesign notes that Harvard researchers “report that for every dollar spent on employee wellness, medical costs fall $3.27 and absenteeism drops $2.73, a 6-to-1 return on investment.”

Minding physical and mental well-being

Whatever programs you choose to pursue, investing in your employees always reaps a meaningful return. Here are four easy wellness activities you can implement this week:

  1. Undistracted eating. Breaking from work while eating seems like a no-brainer, but the habit of eating while checking emails or doing other work is widespread, and sometimes seen as the norm. Encourage employees to step away from their computers or home offices for lunch. Concentrating on food (instead of work) while eating will benefit both body and mind.
  2. Fitness challenges. Whether it’s hitting a companywide steps goal, or drinking those eight glasses of water per day, motivation from co-workers can be helpful in sticking to wellness goals. Host friendly competitions through Teams or Zoom so that employees can still physically check in.
  3. Greet the day. If employees are waking in the morning and feeling uncertain because their routine is different, suggest spending 10-15 minutes on self-care. Many of us now lunge for our phones as soon as we wake up, and with the barrier or work and home being blurred during COVID-19, it’s important to establish that separation.
  4. Yoga classes. Host an online yoga, strength or even dance class. All of these exercises are effective stress relievers, which in turn helps employees feel like they can be more productive afterwards. Incorporating self-care into work helps employees not feel guilty about neglecting their workload.

Elizabeth Baskin is CEO of Tribe. Read more of her work on Tribe’s blog.