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How to get the best out of your corporate well being program

Corporate health and well being has really come to the forefront of employers minds the last few years. With employees spending increasingly more time at work (on average over 70% of employees are working over 44 hours a week), employers have needed to help their employees maintain their health, fitness, mental and physical well being more than ever.

The cost to businesses when employees are sick, be it need to go to doctors appointments for that niggling knee injury, constantly getting the flu, or being constantly stressed is on the rise with it estimated to have cost the Australian economy in excess of $7 Billion dollars per year.

Step 1; Ask Employees what they would benefit from

Asking your employees what they would like in a well being initiative is going to be the best way to ensure that they get the most from it and that you get maximum employee participation. Constructing a survey is the best way to gauge this feedback - ask them what would you do for your health if you had an hour to yourself everyday. This may be something like get a massage, go to the physio or chiro, get a personal trainer, go for a walk. This is then going to be the best indication of how to structure the program and what to include so that it's likely to get maximum participation.

Step 2; Have a goal

When you set out to have a well being program implemented, have a goal of what you would like it to achieve. To ensure that you get the best out of it, have some structure to the program

For example, you may notice that in the afternoons your employees aren't as efficient and don't have as much energy as in the mornings. So the goal could be to help boost employees energy levels in the in the afternoon. Having a specific goal also allows to be able to track it to see if what's been implemented is working and can be continued or needs to be adjusted.

Step 3.Lead by example

Employers should lead by example! Showing that you are taking care of your health is going to be a big motivation for employees to do the same. Getting everyone involved from top level management to middle management to warehouse workers will create a sense of cohesion and team bonding. it will be more motivating for them to go and attend if they see that some of their bosses are also attending.

Step 4; Get feedback and then reassess and readjust

Getting feedback about your well being sessions, not only in terms of how they think the sessions are going but also how they feel after the session and how it has affected their overall health. One way to be able to assess and address this is to get them to write down and keep a log. For example, if they are participating in group training sessions, get them to focus on their strength and fitness and how they feel they are progressing in the sessions and then also in terms of the goal (increasing energy in the afternoons). Just like with any goal, if something is not serving you or helping you reach that goal then you need to readjust it and restructure it.

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