Corporate Wellness as Change Agent

In the past couple weeks, we’ve discussed how to incentivize your corporate wellness program and how to recognize your employees’ progress. We’ve explored the need to listen to your employees, to change objectives as their goals change, to keep rewards and challenges fresh, and to encourage teamwork.

What if I told you that if your corporate wellness program can pull this off, and maintain a cycle of working together and recognizing one another, your company will change for the better overall?

That’s right. It’ll start with wellness, sure, because even at a superficial level, your employees are pushing one another. They might just be doing it for the sake of the program, and maybe to win a few prizes. They might just do it for the selfish reasons of getting healthier, eating better, and exercising regularly.

And then you might notice something happening. It’s time for a new quarterly or monthly health challenge, and it’s a team effort this time. Those who participate – they want to win. Those who are invested – they want to see success. All of a sudden, you have departments working together, maintaining friendly rivalries (or more competitive, who knows) with other departments, trading barbs or words of encouragement.

Before you know it, the office becomes more lively and many people start getting along better. They start investing in the contest outcomes of everyone else, maintaining accountability, even urging non-participants to take up the banner.

Then you notice more projects getting done on, or ahead of, time than before. You notice less contentiousness in the air, more productivity, fewer sick days taken, and come year’s end, less taken out of the budget for medical claims. Morale is up. Teamwork is up. Overall fun is up. And what do you know, so are revenue and profit!

Who would’ve thought that a well-designed corporate wellness program could engineer all of that?

Is it idealistic? Yeah, a bit. The less-motivated can seek to undermine progress and even get hostile to new efforts.

Is such a culture difficult to instill? Yeah, a bit. Some have difficulty with showing recognition, and disagreements will always crop up on one matter or another.

Is it worth the effort? Oh yes. It’s invaluable. Healthy employees, lower medical costs, more productivity, higher morale. Even if it’s an investment (a net loss), many employers would pay a pretty penny to have all these things.

Is your company striving for wellness?

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