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Employee Wellness Program Ideas That Actually Work

BusinessWellbeingArticle

The Importance of Employee Wellness

Treating your employees well has definite benefits. In addition to the feel-good effect of being a decent human being, happy employees are shown to increase productivity and motivation and decrease stress and turnover. Creating a workplace wellness program is one way to show your employees that you care about their well-being.

 

There are many ways to structure a workplace wellness program, but some are not as effective as others. To ensure your program is successful, consider these ten employee wellness program ideas that work.

Encourage Physical Activity

One of the best things you can do for your employees’ health is to encourage them to be physically active. You can do this by providing on-site fitness facilities or discounts at local gyms, holding fitness challenges or competitions, and offering standing desks or other ways to incorporate movement into the workday.

 

Most employees want to be physically active, but they may not have the time or resources to do so independently. By making it easy and affordable for your employees to stay active, you’ll help them improve their health and well-being.

You can also create a stress-free environment in the office by promoting a healthy work-life balance, encouraging breaks and vacation time, and being understanding and flexible when employees are dealing with personal issues.

Promote Healthy Eating

What we eat significantly impacts our health, so it’s essential to promote healthy eating in the workplace through employee wellness activities. There are many ways to do this, including:

 

  • Providing healthy food options in the office
  • Holding cooking or nutrition classes
  • Offering discounts at local grocery stores

 

You can also encourage employees to cook and eat together to bond and build relationships. Not only will these wellness activities for employees promote healthy eating, but they will also help your employees feel more connected to each other.

Offer Stress-Reduction Resources

Stress is a significant contributor to many health problems, so it’s important to offer resources to help employees reduce stress. This could include on-site yoga or meditation classes, access to an employee assistance program, or discounts on spa services.

 

You can also create a stress-free environment in the office by promoting a healthy work-life balance, encouraging breaks and vacation time, and being understanding and flexible when employees are dealing with personal issues. 

 

When employees know they can care for themselves without being penalized, they’ll be less stressed and more productive.

Provide Mental Health Resources

Mental health is just as important as physical health, but it’s often overlooked. To support your employees’ mental health, you can offer resources such as: 

 

  • An employee assistance program
  • On-site counselling
  • Discounts on mental health services
  • Discounts on meditation classes

 

You can also create a mentally healthy workplace by promoting open communication, showing empathy and understanding, and addressing negative behaviors or attitudes directly. When employees feel comfortable speaking about their mental health, they’ll be more likely to seek help when needed.

 

In addition, you can help reduce the stigma associated with mental health problems in the workplace, and employees will be more likely to feel comfortable talking about their mental health with those who can help them.

smiling coworkers with sunflowers

Encourage Preventative Health Care

Preventative health care is vital for both catching health problems early and maintaining good health. To encourage your employees to get preventative care, you can offer health screenings, immunizations, and flu shots at the office. You can also offer discounts on health insurance premiums or health club memberships.

 

Making preventative care convenient and affordable will help your employees stay healthy and catch any health issues early. These employee wellness programs will end up saving you money in the long run and reduce absenteeism and sick leave.

Educate Employees About Health Risks

Employees need to be aware of the health risks they face so they can take steps to prevent them. To educate your employees about health risks, you can offer classes on how to quit smoking, nutrition, and exercise. You can also distribute information about health risks through the office, such as on posters or handouts.

 

When employees are informed about the health risks, they can make better decisions about their health. They’ll also be more likely to take steps to reduce their risk of developing health problems in the first place.

Offer Incentives for Healthy Behavior

Incentives can be a powerful motivator for employees to adopt healthy behaviors. To encourage healthy behavior, you can offer prizes for employees who meet fitness goals, complete health screenings, or participate in wellness programs. 

 

You can also provide gift cards or other rewards for employees who make healthy choices, including:

 

  • Eating healthy foods
  • Exercising regularly
  • Quitting smoking
  • Reducing stress
  • Getting preventive care

 

Incentives for participating in wellness ideas for employees can be used to encourage a wide variety of healthy behaviors, so you’re sure to find one that will work for your employees.

Provide Healthy Snacks 

The snacks you provide at the office can make a big difference in your employees’ health. For example, offer fruit and vegetables instead of chips and candy to promote healthy eating. You can also have healthy snacks available for employees to purchase, such as yogurt, granola bars, or fruit cups.

 

If you do provide unhealthy snacks, your employees will be more likely to experience sugar spikes and the dreaded mid-afternoon slump. Offering healthy snacks will help your employees make better choices about what they eat and give them the energy to get through their day.

Create a Walking Group

Walking is a great way to get exercise, and it’s something that can be done during the workday. To encourage your employees to walk, you can create a walking group. A walking group can be held during lunchtime, before or after work, or even during a break.


Walking groups (as well as running groups) are a great way to get employees moving and socializing simultaneously. They’re also a great way to reduce stress and improve employees’ moods.

Hold a Health Fair

Health fairs are a fantastic way to provide employees with information about health and wellness. For example, you can offer screenings for blood pressure, cholesterol, and other health risks at a health fair.

 

Health fairs are a great way to get employees engaged in their health. They’re also a great way to promote communication between employees and your company’s health care providers.

Final Thoughts

Implementing these ten employee wellness program ideas will help your employees to live healthier and more active lives. These employee wellness ideas will also improve your business by reducing absenteeism, encouraging a healthy dynamic between employees and managers, and help to reduce the overall costs of health care.

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