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Workplace Health - Promote a Culture of Wellness

Promote a culture of wellness in your workplace by incorporating quick and easy ideas in your workplace.

 

Employers, managers, leaders should:

  • Walk the talk

    Walk the talk - model healthy behaviours, a caring attitude, trust and respect for your employees and coworkers.
  • Change your mission statement, business plans, strategic goals, etc.

    Change your mission statement, business plans, strategic goals, etc. to reflect and state the company’s commitment to the health and wellness of all employees in the company.
  • Create a wellness committee

    Create a wellness committee and give them the responsibility to implement health promoting activities.
  • Allocate resources

    Allocate resources - a budget, employee time and physical space for the wellness committee to work.
 
  • Allow the committee to survey your staff

    Allow the committee to survey your staff to discover what health and wellness information they want to learn more about to meet their own personal health and wellness needs and goals
  • Allow the survey to include questions 

    Allow the survey to include questions about what the staff feel could be done differently in your workplace to support their wellness efforts and to identify problem areas causing increased stress levels.
  • Allow all employees paid time off to attend health screenings and medical appointments and treatment

    Allow all employees paid time off to attend health screenings and medical appointments and treatment with physiotherapists, dieticians or other health professionals
  • Allow flexibility

    Allow flexibility (where able) in employee schedules to accommodate medical appointments, tending to sick children, elders in their care, etc.
  • Allow employees to have some input

    Allow employees to have some input into scheduling, how their jobs are done, how their day is organized (where able), etc.
  • Provide training for all staff

    Provide training for all staff in time-management, communication skills, stress reduction, work-life-family balance, first aid training, mental health and addiction
  • Provide support and referral service information

    Provide support and referral service information for employees with alcohol or substance misuse problems
  • Educate your workforce

    Educate your workforce about the importance of physical activity, healthy eating, not smoking, alcohol and substance misuse, mental health etc. by tapping into the Health at Work 4 All! program and program services offered by MLHU that have been specifically created for workplaces.
  • Consider creating policies to provide a supportive environment

    Consider creating policies to provide a supportive environment that supports behaviour change and reinforces expectations
  • Ensure healthy food options

    Ensure healthy food options are available in cafeterias, vending machines, etc.
  • Ensure that a clean, dry, pleasant space is provided for employees to eat meals 

    Ensure that a clean, dry, pleasant space is provided for employees to eat meals.
  • Consider allowing only healthy foods

    Consider allowing only healthy foods to be brought into meetings on site at your workplace. Create a healthy eating at meetings policy
  • Encourage the use of stairs 

    Encourage the use of stairs instead of elevators.
  • Encourage walking

    Encourage walking at breaks and/or walk and talk meetings.
  • Encourage frequent stretching

    Encourage frequent stretching at desks or on assembly lines (where everybody stops and does it at predetermined intervals).
  • Provide bike racks, showers, changing facilities

  • Encourage intra-company games, challenges and exercise groups

  • Provide on-site fitness centre or discounts for local facilities

  • Ban tobacco

    Ban tobacco use in or near your workplace.
  • Provide help for staff who smoke 

    Provide help for staff who smoke – paid time off to attend counseling, access to NRT, support persons (nonsmoking buddies) within the workplace.
  • Provide relaxation

    Provide relaxation, yoga, aromatherapy or similar sessions before or after work.
  • Provide counseling or referrals

    Provide counseling or referral to an outside agency for mental health issues.
  • Consider all alternatives for Return To Work Accommodations

    Consider all alternatives for Return To Work Accommodations for anyone who has be off work due to extended illness, injury or mental health issues.
  • Encourage social activities

    Encourage social activities among work colleagues.
  • Allow time for volunteering

    allow time for volunteering within the community - on work time.

Quick and easy ways to promote your new health and wellness programs, activities and initiatives in your workplace

  • Have supervisor or manager announce it in a team meeting
  • Include an announcement  in a company newsletter
  • Send a mass e-mail
  • Send a “launch letter” prior to the start of the activity
  • Clearly outline the expectations and procedures for the activity
  • Provide a “launch kit” with promotional items or supplies related to the activity (i.e. a reusable water bottle, sweat towel, pedometer, healthy snack etc.)
  • Provide a guest speaker to introduce the activity
  • Provide more information in key places in your workplace - on bulletin boards, by elevators, in stair wells etc.)
  • Put announcement, tidbits of ‘teaser” information on a pay stub or add an insert
  • Don’t forget to make all activities it available to everyone, on every shift, at every location
Please note: always consider the age, gender, physical and cultural needs of your workforce when planning health and wellness initiatives and activities. More than one method of participating and achieving the desired results may need to be considered.
 
Date of creation: February 28, 2013
Last modified on: August 13, 2014