Employee wellness has become essential in times when the states of mental and physical health started to directly influence our daily lives. As routines and work interweave and evolve, it has become evident why employee wellness programs are important. When an organization prioritizes its employee’s health, they also prioritize their happiness. Consequently, happy employees result in higher engagement and productivity, which is good for business.
So, what is employee wellness? Just as wellness refers to good health, employee wellness is the extension of it in the workplace. And here it has a direct impact on the way people approach work and general performance.
As a leader, you should recognize how the current corporate culture can improve by focusing on your employee’s wellbeing. Some companies offer to reimburse expenses for exercise passes or subsidize different class memberships. Meanwhile, others provide ergonomic office furniture and equipment. However, are these perks what your employees really expect? Unfortunately, most of them experience a constant burnout due to complex situations the world is currently facing. So, how can you genuinely establish a well-structured program that becomes a valued asset to engage, attract, and retain new talent?
Fighting employee burnout
The problem is that companies are dealing with a burnout crisis among their staff. So, employers who wish to provide support for employees are battling to avoid burnout and to inspire higher productivity.
Burnout can become a severe threat to a company with no resources to help employees overcome it. This problem doesn’t only stay at work but can also affect an employee’s life outside the office. Meanwhile, alarming stats show that burned out employees are 23 percent more likely to visit the emergency room. So, what causes this burnout, and how can wellness programs conquer it?
Incredibly, everyday routines can be devastating. So, lofty expectations for better performance can result in lower confidence and lack of engagement. And when individual performance decreases, the whole organization is affected.
Among all the factors affecting employee wellness, management may be the primary one. It’s no surprise that workplace relationships and leadership strategy can make a significant difference in how someone approaches everyday tasks. Below, we’ll explain some things that managers can evaluate and improve to ensure they’re not the reason for such burnout.
1. Treat everyone fairly
Psychological connections make work meaningful when employees and leaders have trustworthy relationships. Those connections break when employees don’t feel they can trust or rely on their managers or even teammates. Find out and assess if there’s any favoritism or mistreatment among your team, since those who face it will experience higher burnout.
2. Provide a manageable workload
It is a well-known fact that tasking employees beyond their strength can drive even the most effective ones to despair. In addition, their confidence is affected as they don’t feel accomplished, and their performance also diminishes. Be aware of realistic workloads and deadlines since having enough time to perform tasks is essential to avoiding burnout.
3. Give role clarity
Do your employees know what you or your company in general expect from them? Clarify roles and responsibilities and ensure everyone knows what they’re accountable for. It’s exhausting to figure out what is expected, so foster clarity from day one.
4. Offer support and timely communication
Employees should always be able to count on their managers. Moreover, they should be confident that their boss has their backs. That sense of protection, along with timely and transparent communication, can go a long way by helping employees reduce the feeling of burnout.
Employee wellness plans are critical for any modern organization
So, what are employee wellness programs covering? Today every company strives to create a happier workplace and appealing programs can do that. Supporting employees through holistic benefits schemes is an essential asset for ever-growing companies. As surveyed last year, 57 percent of workers relate their well-being to productivity. When employees don’t prioritize wellness, their work is compromised.
On the other hand, employees with physical, mental, emotional, and financial wellness services permit them to concentrate on work rather than their daily struggles. As you take care of them, they will care about your business. Thriving companies understand that employee wellness is at the core of success.
How to start a wellness program that aligns with your employees’ needs
As a leader, you should consider innovative employee wellness ideas to establish or adjust your programs to current or future needs. Understanding present conditions and listening to employee opinions will help you create a plan that fits best for your people. Additionally, you may consider some of the ideas we share below.
- Create a wellness board. Selecting a group of people to take on employee wellness plans as a dedicated task will help advocate for the constant well-being of your staff. They will look for and brainstorm innovative activities, challenges, and improve programs based on the direct feedback of their colleagues.
- Ask employees what’s most important to them. How to increase employee participation in wellness programs? Run anonymous surveys and invite them to share what truly matters to them. Can you offer what they need onsite? Can you create a reimbursement plan for the resources they wish to use outside the office? Address their needs and concerns.
- Set goals and objectives. Tracking the progress of your wellness program is vital to identify what works and what should be changed. Determine what areas need the most attention. Ask the board to create health challenges to improve employee wellness and assess their results.
- Choose the right vendor. Explore what employee wellness ideas vendors offer and identify who can give you the solutions you’re looking for. Once you know your staff needs, it will be easier to find the right support for employees and develop engaging plans.
Go all in with people-first approach
If employee wellness is such a vital asset for any organization, how much should a company spend on relevant programs? The answer can vary based on how much an employer wants to offer. However, the cost can go from $150 to $2,000 annually per employee or less when hiring a wellness digital platform or even higher when bringing in a vendor.
Whether you choose to establish your own program or outsource the responsibilities, be sure to consider the following employee wellness ideas and make them part of your plan.
- Physical health. Although it may be obvious, approaching this area in a fun way can make an enormous difference. Beyond health screenings, opt for joyful fitness challenges that can encourage healthy competition at work and reward people’s efforts.
- Mental health. Which benefit may result from using mental health services? Let’s consider that about 86 percent of employees treated for depression improved work performance and reduced absenteeism by 40 to 60 percent. Employee productivity is highly affected by mental health. Meditation, yoga, or relaxation programs are an excellent way to implement mental health routines.
- Emotional health. Make emotional health topics part of the conversation in your work culture. Alert employees of burnout risk and offer communication channels to prevent and manage symptoms of emotional fatigue. When needed, encourage them to volunteer for social causes to help them gain purpose.
- Financial health. When employees are confident about their financial future, they will be more focused at work. Everyone needs some help to boost their finances, so offering effective tools to learn how to achieve that can be an excellent advantage for many people. You can only gain from your employees being successful inside and outside the office.