As you most likely know, I worked in the corporate world for 10 years. From 2008-2018, my life was full of highly stressful days in the office, late nights entertaining clients, and very little time to take care of myself.
But, while I was building my career in the financial industry, I was also trying to manage my Crohn's Disease. It was an endless vicious cycle of being sick and stressed--and it did not benefit anyone.
So, as I started to incorporate healthy habits into my schedule, as well as become certified in Nutrition and Health Coaching, I realized how important it was to bring these newly formed habits into the lives of others.
While it still may be "taboo" to speak of self care in the workplace, below are 11 data-backed benefits of having wellness in the workplace.
1. Increase healthy behavior & decrease the risk of lifestyle-related disease
In the conclusion of a Workplace Wellness Programs Study Report published byRand Health Quarterly, researchers write:
“Consistent with prior research, we find that lifestyle management interventions as a component of a wellness program can reduce risk factors, such as smoking, and increase healthy behaviors, such as exercise. We find that these effects are sustainable over time and clinically meaningful. This result is of critical importance, as it confirms that workplace wellness programs can help contain the current epidemic of lifestyle-related diseases, the main driver of premature morbidity and mortality as well as health care cost in the United States.”
A well-executed employee wellness program can actually make your employees healthier in the long run! Why not offer an employee benefit that attracts and keeps incredible talent?
2. Increase engagement
A report conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit states that,
"Wellness programs align employer and employee goals more closely. They increase employee engagement with the company’s mission and goals. Employees are also more likely to see their own wellness as being linked with professional success. Companies that build a wellness culture thus acquire a workforce that is not only more focused and engaged, but that sees that culture as benefiting their careers.”
3. Employees want them!
Experts from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health analyzed surveys to determine the overall perceptions of wellness programs from employee and employer perspectives. Their data analysis revealed that about 59.4% of employees think employers should attempt to improve the health of their workers.
With building competition among companies, why not use this as a recruitment tool to add more than just your standard benefits to your employment packages? Stay ahead of the game and create an environment that will make your employees want to do well for you!
4. Increase adaptability
Top researchers at Gallup found that employees who are engaged at work and also experience high levels of well-being were 45% more likely than other employees to adapt to change.
By implementing an employee wellness program, you can help your most engaged employees adapt to change, increasing their performance and reducing their stress levels.
5. They provide a solid return on investment
The Community Preventive Services Task Force (CPSTF) performed a systematic review of programs that featured health risk assessments with feedback and health education. They found that for every dollar invested in health intervention, employees recouped between $1.40 and $4.60 in avoided medical costs and productivity losses.
6. Boost productivity
A study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine stated that when employees leveraged wellness programs to make lifestyle changes, they ended up saving their companies about $353 per person in recouped productivity—productivity they gained as a result of their newfound wellness.
So, if you can save $353 per person per year and have 200 employees, you are saving $70,600 in one year alone!
7. Elevate company culture
A Virgin Pulse study found that 85% of employers believed their successful wellness program had a positive influence on company culture.
Company culture consists of many variables, which are often difficult to pinpoint, which why connecting an uptick in positive culture with a specific action is so significant. Allow your employees to come to work every day engaged and excited to be with those around them.
8. Boost market valuation
In another report published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, researchers concluded that:
“This study supports prior and ongoing research demonstrating a higher market valuation—an affirmation of business success by Wall Street investors—of socially responsible companies that invest in the health and well-being of their workers when compared with other publicly traded firms.”
While it takes time to establish and implement wellness programs, the long-term benefits of doing so prove to be worth it.
9. Improve mental health & decrease depression
A study from Nutrition found that a specific health and wellness program, the Coronary Health Improvement Project (CHIP), actually led to decreased depression as an added benefit to improved nutrition.
The researchers used the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) as a measure, and they suggest that in addition to the nutrition factors contributing to decreased depression, the social interaction and positive reinforcement involved in the program may have helped.
HEALTHY EMPLOYEES = HAPPY EMPLOYEES = PRODUCTIVE EMPLOYEES = PROFITABLE EMPLOYEES
10. Build camaraderie
By their very nature, employee wellness programs depend on the participation of multiple employees. So no matter what kind of program you choose, it’s guaranteed to bring employees together on some level.
And, going back to #9, since employees thrive off of social interaction, this further enhances their mood and overall mental, as well as physical, wellness.
11. Reduce and manage stress
Develop an employee wellness program focused on mindfulness, and you could notice a major reduction in workplace stress. According to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, meditation might help improve anxiety, stress, and depression.
As I mentioned in my own personal experience, I know what it is like to be on the constant merry-go-round of being sick and stressed, leading to lack of productivity, energy, and losses for all of those around me.
So, with all of that in mind...what are you waiting for?
Let's schedule a time to chat about bringing wellness into your workplace--whether it be for an in-person workshop, virtual coaching sessions, or daily email programs--and we can get your team rolling on the wellness train for all of 2019.