Increasingly, leaders are recognizing that healthy, happy employees are more productive employees. But, let’s face it, achieving a thriving team goes beyond simply rolling out a cookie-cutter corporate wellness program and calling it a job well done. The crème de la crème of corporate wellness programs is rooted in fostering employee engagement, providing access to health resources, and delivering results that drive positive change.
Here’s what you need to know to create or choose a high-quality corporate wellness program that will help your employees thrive.
5 Factors That Influence Employee Success
While physical health does impact employee success, there are many other factors that can help or hurt employee engagement and productivity. Beyond physical health, when building or choosing a corporate wellness program, it’s important to also think of your employees’…
- Mental and emotional wellbeing
- Work-life harmony
- Sense of purpose and engagement
- Professional development opportunities
- Psychological safety in the workplace
All of these factors play a role in your employees’ — and your overall company’s — success. By accounting for these factors in the selection or development of your corporate wellness program, you are much more likely to create a culture in which employees thrive and produce higher quality work that boosts your bottom line.
4 Necessary Components of a Top Corporate Wellness Program
Crafting an impactful corporate wellness program is a bit like assembling a puzzle with four key pieces. But it’s not just about having the right pieces; it’s about knowing how each piece fits into the bigger picture.
Just as health disparities, neurodiversity and generational differences influence your workplace, they also shape how your employees engage with these wellness components. So, while you’re building your wellness program, consider offering options that cater to different needs, ensuring that everyone gets a piece of the wellness pie.
1. Physical Health and Nutrition
First, of course, is physical health and fitness. According to Elaine Moen, Director of Wellness Relations at Arootah, “In terms of corporate wellness, I have found employees really benefit from yoga and meditation. Any chance you have to get them out of their seat and away from their desk is a plus! Meditation enhances focus and supports emotional regulation and awareness. Chair yoga is another way to increase mobility. All these options help employees with mobility, mental clarity, and energy.”
She adds, “In terms of nutrition, offer alternative snacks like fruits and nuts, swapping these out for sugary snacks or swapping tea for an afternoon coffee.”
2. Mental and Emotional Well-being
The mental and emotional well-being of your workforce profoundly influences your organization. According to the World Health Organization, 12 billion working days are lost annually to depression and anxiety, and both issues can cost the global economy $1 trillion per year, on average, due to the resulting loss of productivity.
Rather than focusing solely on physical health and fitness, it’s time to tackle this issue head-on. Enhance your wellness program by incorporating stress management workshops and mindfulness or meditation sessions. Make counseling services more readily available and motivate your employees to use them.
Lead by setting an example and getting involved in the wellness programs within your organization. This not only shows your commitment to practicing what you advocate but also bolsters your leadership role as a hands-on role model.
3. Work-Life Harmony
Beyond the physical, mental, and emotional aspects of health, it’s crucial to recognize the significance of work-life harmony for your employees. To achieve work-life harmony, your employees must create synergies between their personal and professional lives, rather than viewing them as separate entities.
If your employees struggle with living harmoniously, devise a strategy to address this challenge. Consider encouraging your team to redefine their values and passions. Think about offering more support for parents and caregivers, acknowledging the diverse roles your employees juggle. You might even want to provide amenities like ergonomic chairs, lemon water, and healthy snacks in the office, promoting self-care during work hours.
4. Professional Growth and Leadership Development
Lastly, if you want your employees to be truly engaged, you need to give them opportunities to develop themselves professionally above and beyond your wellness offerings.
According to an article from The Counselling Foundation of Canada, career development is intrinsically linked with mental health, because career development directly impacts life satisfaction, sense of purpose, social relationships, and other factors.
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Corporate Wellness Program Case Studies
Want to learn more about effective corporate wellness programs? Dive into the case studies below.
Case Study #1: Johnson & Johnson’s Live for Life Wellness Program
Johnson & Johnson, a well-known multinational pharmaceutical and healthcare giant, introduced the ‘Live for Life’ wellness initiative with a simple goal in mind: to enhance the health, morale, and productivity of its employees, all while making healthcare costs more manageable.
Over the course of a decade, this program achieved impressive results. The percentage of smokers among employees dropped significantly, going from 12.2% to just 3.9%. Additionally, absenteeism saw a substantial reduction of 96%.
Beyond these tangible benefits, Johnson & Johnson estimates that this wellness journey led to savings of $890k per year, due to healthier employees and supercharged productivity.
Case Study #2: Prudential Financial’s Workplace Transformation
Prudential Financial, a well-established Fortune 500 insurance and investment company with a workforce of over 50,000 individuals, introduced an innovative health and wellness initiative called ‘Healthy Steps.’ This comprehensive program offers a range of benefits to all Prudential employees and their families, including biometric screenings for BMI, resources for nutrition and weight management, access to fitness centers, and financial incentives to encourage participation.
The impact was significant, with a reported 57% fewer hours lost among employees and a 94% higher job satisfaction rating. Equally impressive, 86% of employees reported that the program substantially reduced their overall stress.
The Bottom Line
When it comes to creating a successful corporate wellness program, don’t stick to a one-size-fits-all strategy. Instead, dive into understanding what truly matters to your employees.
To unlock your workforce’s full potential, design a corporate wellness program that embraces a holistic approach, remains accessible to everyone, and addresses the specific challenges they face. By embracing these all-encompassing strategies, you won’t just enhance employee engagement and productivity, but you’ll also reduce turnover rates.