Paul Lanthois, Director of The Work Life Balance Foundation shares
seven tips to make sure employees are in top shape, especially during
these difficult times. It's a long read - and well worth it!
With increasing oil prices and the global credit crunch
leading to fears of a recession, it is a time of consolidation for most
companies. There is one area that can stimulate productivity and reduce
costs that the majority of corporations haven´t yet considered....
Improving the health of their workers. Businesses that don´t prepare
and adapt may drown under the ever- increasing costs of health care.
many years businesses have long considered employee health and
wellbeing to be the responsibility of the individual. Although people
are responsible for their own health, corporations have only recently
come to terms with the impact health has on the company´s bottom line.
They are realising that their company´s health is influenced by their
Smart companies are starting workplace
wellness programs to help workers stay healthy and productive in an
effort to lower health-care costs and employee absenteeism. A recent
survey of hundreds of U.S. companies found that 41 percent had already
launched a health-related strategy... and the results are paying off.
Statistics on bigger companies indicate that the savings
can be almost $5 for every dollar spent on making workers healthier.
And while larger businesses can afford more formalized health and
wellness programs in the workplace, even smaller companies are can get
in on the act.
From my 18 years of clinical experience, I have
developed what I like to call a CHEW Program...A Company´s Health,
Energy and Wellness Program. With a CHEW Program in place, it will help
ensure that your company doesn´t bite of more than it can chew!
are seven low cost and effective ways to improve the health, energy and
wellness within your workplace. If you are an employee and not in a
position of management, it is in your own health´s interest to have a
work environment that encourages health and wellness. Present these
ideas to your boss as a low cost way to improve productivity and reduce
absenteeism. Even if your boss decides against implementing a Company
Health Energy and Wellness program there is nothing to stop you from
introducing many of these changes into your own work environment.
1) Lighten Up Your Work Environment
the curtains. Encourage as much natural light into your work
environment as possible. Whereas darkness may be nature´s sleeping
pill, sunlight is better than a double espresso in the morning in terms
of giving you a kick-start in the morning. Light of any form
immediately shuts off the production of the drowsy melatonin, letting
your body know it is time to get up and get going. If you are not near
a window, try to get some natural sunlight on your skin during a break,
particularly if you are feeling flat.
2) Live Plants
one of the most effective stress relievers in the workplace is having a
plant or flowers to look at. Studies have shown that looking at natural
scenes while performing tasks can lower our heart rate by three beats
per second. This relaxing effect also translates to reducing pain.
People looking at trees and plants required less pain killing
medications than people who had to look at a wall.
3) Full Bottle Of Water On Each Desk
an adequate amount of water is the simplest and most effective way of
ensuring that you consistently keep your insides clean and maintain
high energy levels. Losing as little as two percent of your body weight
in fluids is enough to impair athletic performance, dull critical
thinking abilities and cause tiredness.
4) Put Fresh Lemons By The Water Cooler
people who don´t like drinking water often don´t like the taste.
Squeeze some fresh lemons into your water bottle will help the water
become a lot more palatable.
5) Educate Employees About The Ideal Water Intake
often read about that you need to consume 8 glasses of water each day
but the amount of water that you need is influenced by your body size,
your activity, the amount water in the food that you eat, the humidity
and temperature. Whilst drinking 8 glasses of water a day is a good
guide to follow, it is even more beneficial to monitor your urine
colour. Your urine colour is a more accurate indicator of how hydrated
6) Fruit And Nuts
a fruit bowl and a bowl of nuts for each employee. Work out a mutually
beneficial arrangement between your local grocer and your company. You
may receive discounted or free healthy produce in exchange for the
patronage of your company, employees and clients. It is a win: win all
surely has to be the most pleasurable way to relieve stress and aches
and pains. Nothing in the world can beat the bliss of having a massage.
But what if there was a way that you and your workmates can get regular
massages while at the same time, creating a unique point of difference
to your customers and clients?
As many businesses have found
when you have a happier and healthier environment it not only
translates into improved productivity outcomes and less worker
absenteeism. The additional benefit is that a healthier work
environment with healthier employees creates a healthier and happier
experience for your client. It will help your corporation thrive and
not just survive because the health of your employees is your business.