Health & Wellness in the office during COVID-19
COVID-19 has changed everything about how we work. Above all, it has highlighted the importance of prioritizing employee’s health and wellbeing – both physical and mental.
Corporate health and wellness programs not only give businesses a competitive advantage in retaining talent, but also can lead to higher productivity, optimum performance, less office stress, and happier employees. Even during these tough times, there are many ways we can still incorporate health and wellness into the office.
We’ve highlighted 6 budget-friendly solutions that can easily be incorporated into the office and address multiple areas of health.
1. Yoga classes
Offer and encourage employees to move their bodies during the workday by providing in-office yoga classes during breaks or lunchtime, even if it’s just once or twice a week.
Yoga and meditation are very effective stress relievers and a fantastic way to incorporate self-care into the office. By offering in-office yoga classes, employees don’t have to feel guilty about neglecting their work and taking a break to do something for themselves; ultimately leading to higher productivity and benefiting the business.
A key aspect of practicing yoga is having the space to do so. That being said, this is a very safe and practical wellness program during COVID-19. Many companies use a conference or break room to practice. Even better, does your office have a rooftop space? Head outside on a nice day, stretch your legs, do some yoga, and take in the view.
2) Catered lunches and healthy snacks
Order lunch for the office, especially during busy times of the year. Employees may skip out on lunch or opt for unhealthy, quick meal options when they feel like they don’t have time or are too stressed. With (usually) only 30 minutes for lunch, employees may feel that they have to eat fast food, but thankfully there are now services to solve these less-healthy eating habits.
Promoting healthy eating habits is so important, especially during these times; a healthy body promotes a healthy mind. A corporate lunch catering program will appeal to all your employees – everyone has to eat!
3) Offer standing desks
Remaining in one fixed position for too long doesn’t sound fun for anyone, nor is it healthy. Offer standing desks to your employees and encourage them to switch up their positions throughout the workday. The switching aspect is key to accessing optimal health benefits; lower blood sugar levels, reduced back pain, boosts productivity, mood and energy. So be sure to sit less, and stand more.
4) Encourage walking meetings
Even if you have a standing desk, it’s so important to fit physical activity into your day. Get some fresh air and stimulate your creative mind by incorporating walking meetings into your corporate office, whether it’s a socially distant walk or meeting on your phone. Research suggests that walking meetings are more productive than sitting in an office space, so why not get moving?
5) Reduce or prevent eyestrain
For those who work in an office and stare at a computer screen all day, it can take a toll on your vision and lead to headaches and fatigue. If you don’t already have a pair of blue light glasses to help protect your eyes from the harmful rays emitted by most digital screens, here are a few tools that can help prevent eye strain and help you sleep better at night:
- Flux: alters the color of your screen to the time of day and is less harsh on your eyes.
- Time Out: reminds you when it’s time to step away from the digital screen and give your eyes a break.
6) Incorporate safe social activities
Offer social activities in your office while staying safe and sane, especially during a time of social isolation. Team bonding activities strengthen relationships among coworkers and boost communication within a team. Consider activities like an office game night, book club, trivia, or charades. You could even create a survey asking your employees to suggest activities they think would be enjoyable. Smiling and having fun are important parts of health too.
Bringing health and wellness into your office is much more than just a neat employee perk. It’s an effective way to ensure that your employees are happy and can put their best foot forward. Incorporating a good employee wellness program is beneficial for employees and employers alike. Healthy employees means a healthy business.
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