A healthy employee is a happy employee - ways to promote well-being in the office

Watching out for your employees' health and well-being should be one of your top priorities as an employer. There's nothing more important than health, and it can affect various spheres of your employee's lives, including their productivity and satisfaction with the workplace. For these reasons, you're going to want to do your best to somehow improve their well-being at the office. If you're wondering how, here are a few ideas to consider.

Work on communication

Communication is an integral part of any workplace dynamic. While it’s true that it’s mostly a place for professional interaction, you can’t disregard the social element of your workplace. People will always strive to communicate and create connections, and you should try your best to foster and encourage this type of communication.

There are very few reasons that employees would go to their managers for problems. They are more likely to vent to their coworkers and share their woes with them. Having coworker support to fall back on can be very beneficial to an employee’s mental well-being. A lack of communication can leave them feeling isolated and alone in the workplace, exacerbating any already present problems.

Encourage better communication by implementing an open-door policy and improving the social aspect of your workplace. As long as employees are able to communicate freely with one another and HR, they will find it a lot easier to get to the bottom of their problems. At the same time, you’ll have a much easier time changing anything that’s wrong with the workplace atmosphere.

Provide healthier nutrition options

Employees don't often care much about what they eat at the office. They'll have their breakfast at home and work with what they have available for lunch. Most of them will count on breakfast to keep them satisfied until they get home. They might even bring a snack or two to enjoy during their coffee break, but this might not be enough.

It’s important that employees are well-fed throughout the workday. The food they eat provides them with the energy they need to get through the day. They’ll need this energy to perform quality work for the full eight hours of their workday. This isn’t easily achieved with food that is lacking in nutrition.

Most workplaces won’t have a lot of healthy or nutritious options available for employees. The office kitchen mostly serves as a place where employees can heat their lunches and have the occasional snack. Vending machines aren’t known for providing adequate nutrition, either. However, this is something that you should change if you want employees to work at peak performance.

If possible, try adding a cantina to your office kitchen. Preparing food isn’t too costly, but it can significantly improve workplace nutrition. Having a few sandwiches and small meals available would make lunch a lot more tolerable for many employees, and they’d have something to look forward to as the workday slowly comes to a close.

Promote teamwork and cooperation

Cooperation is a crucial part of any workplace. Seldom will an employee work on large projects on their own. In most cases, you’ll have teams of employees working towards a similar goal, where each and every employee’s work contributes to the success of the project. They will also interact on a daily basis to make sure that the project work is coordinated enough to produce worthwhile results.

Teamwork isn’t something you start out with. It’s something you have to work on in order to have a strong and cohesive team. Teamwork exercises can be very useful aids to help you achieve this. The type of exercise you choose is entirely up to you.

Pick activities that will test your team’s resolve and communication skills. They should become well-acquainted with each other in a relaxed and stress-free environment. It’s good practice for when they need to cooperate on important projects. See where everyone’s strengths and weaknesses lie. The more your employees work together, the more they’ll be able to gauge who to fall back on and when to do it. This will help reduce miscommunication and make work go along at a smoother pace.

Allow for adequate rest

There's no good in having overworked employees. Contrary to popular belief, giving a hundred and ten percent doesn't always lead to good results. More likely, it leads to a lot of wasted time and uninspired work. Working too much for prolonged periods of time can only lead to burnout and deterioration of an employee's work.

Rest is a critical element of productiveness. People need mental and physical rest in order to function, and this goes for your employees as well. When employees are provided with adequate rest, they are able to perform at optimal capacity. Now, what does this mean for your company?

You have to ease up on the workload from time to time. Remember that employees are people too and they need to take a break every once in a while. Spread out the work evenly across their schedules so that no day ends up being too much to handle. Otherwise, you'll see a dramatic drop in the quality of work done for such days. If employees have to stay at work extra hours from time to time, make sure it isn't a regular occurrence. It helps to give them proper compensation for the extra work done, as they will treat it with contempt otherwise.

Give extra meaning to work

Ask any employee what their main motivation is for working at the company, and you’ll get a huge range of answers. Some will say they are working for the betterment of the business, while others will mention their love of their profession. The most honest among them will probably say they’re in it for the paycheck. However, motivation is a lot more complex once you get down to everyday work. People like working towards a good cause, and they quickly lose their drive if they don’t see a point to their work.

As an employer, you're going to want to provide them with a goal worth working towards. This is a lot easier than you might think. Charity work is something that everyone supports, from the managers to the workers. Have part of the work go towards funding a charity of your choice. Smaller businesses that are just getting by might not see this as a worthwhile investment, but the morale boost will mean a lot more than you would expect. The good news is that even a small symbolic number would be well-received by your employees. As long as they have something good to work towards, they'll find the motivation to give it their best shot.

Build a cohesive team

Team cohesion is one of the more important elements that make up an effective workforce. A good relationship between coworkers fosters a quality work environment, while also making them feel like they're part of a family working together to achieve a common goal. This is something that can make employees feel at home, even while they're working.

What better way to improve team cohesion than to get into some physical activity? Sports have long been used for team building and improving workplace relationships. Introducing some sporting activities would go a long way towards making your employees feel like they're part of a team.

It doesn’t have to be an actual sport either, you can just partake in some friendly physical activity and bonding. Riding a bicycle is something just about everyone can enjoy. Plus, it gets you outside in the fresh air, which makes it even more enjoyable. Organize a weekend ride through nature with your employees and they’re sure to build connections. Even the select few that might not be expert bike riders can participate. They might need to catch up on some biking for beginners tips, but that’s something you shouldn’t have trouble organizing. Learning how to ride a bike is easy, and it stays with you for good.

Introduce pets

While this may seem like an unorthodox tip, there are a surprising number of benefits to having pets around the office. Humans have been linked to animals for as long as society has existed. Cats and dogs have long served as companions that help people weather tough times. They might not be as essential for hunting or protection as they once were, but they still have a very positive effect on everyone around them.

Having an office pet could prove to be extremely beneficial to employee morale. A furry little friend could lighten up the office atmosphere and make people feel more comfortable while working. Plus, it gives employees something to nurture and protect as the day goes on. You might think that this would act as an extra chore, but the contrary is true. Employees would enjoy taking care of their new office friend and making sure he or she stays safe. There are very few drawbacks as well. Pet food is surprisingly cheap and you won’t have to worry about shelter, considering it will spend time in the office.

Conclusion

Promoting health in the workplace is the single best way to increase morale, productivity, and team cohesiveness in the office. If you show yourself capable of taking care of your employees, they’re quickly going to take note of this. Consider some of the above ideas and your employees are sure to appreciate it and give it their all when working for the company.

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