6 steps to Workplace Wellness
6 steps to Workplace Wellness
Although individuals are ultimately responsible for their own health behaviours and choices, they can be supported to choose healthier options and behaviours if they are given the right information, skills and a supportive environment. Given that on average we spend 60% (or more!) of our day at work, workplaces are an ideal setting to improve an individual’s health and wellbeing. A healthy worker can, in turn, have a major impact on the business itself!
There are significant benefits for both the employer and employees when workplace wellness is addressed, such as improving overall employee health, increasing productivity, reducing absenteeism and creating a happier and more positive workplace culture!
So what is workplace wellness? Here at Healthier Workplace WA, we define workplace wellness as a supportive environment, education and awareness raising activities and organisational policy that support healthy behaviour in the workplace. Ideally, these activities are done in combination with one another rather than a stand-alone, or once off activity.
The good news is that workplace wellness doesn’t have to be complicated. There are 6 essential steps that will help you maximise your Program’s success.
1. Management support: It is essential that senior management is supportive of employee health and wellbeing, and that they understand what workplace wellness is and the benefits of an effective Workplace Health and Wellbeing Program. Building a strong business case is a great way to gain support and commitment from management.
2. Dedicated program coordinator: You need to identify a key person who will be responsible for coordinating your program and recruiting staff participation. Workplaces need to ensure that an appropriate amount of time and resources are given to the Program Coordinator to develop and deliver the Program.
3. Consult with staff: One of the most important steps in workplace wellness is consulting with your employees! Staff provide valuable insights into what strategies will and won’t work in your workplace. Things you may way to ask your staff include barriers that are preventing staff from engaging in healthy behaviours at work, and what would motivate staff to participate in healthy behaviours and activities.
4. Good planning: An action plan will allow you to describe what, when and how you’ll achieve your goals. Put pen to paper and list your goals, clear objectives and what strategies you will need to undertake to achieve them. You can use your action plan to keep track of your program’s progress and successes.
5. Ensure a combination of strategies: Undertaking one-off ad-hoc activities won’t lead to success in the long term. You need to ensure a mix of evidence-based strategies including education, awareness raising, a supportive environment and organisational policy.
6. Monitor: Review your program regularly to see what’s working and what’s not. Ask yourself, Have you met the program goals? Have the strategies have been successful? Can you improve the program for the future? It’s likely that the needs of your workplace will continue to change, so it is important to continue to adjust your program to achieve results.
To start your workplace wellness journey today undertake our FREE workplace health check.
Want to learn more? Healthier Workplace WA offers FREE online training.
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