Physical Health and Workplace Culture
by Brian Ganden -
August 11, 2020
Having a healthy workplace culture means more than having fooseball tables and employer-sponsored social gatherings and celebrations…though I enjoy all of those things…for us at Granville West Group, it means having a culture that inspires and supports healthy human behaviour. The benefits are huge: less sick days, reduced benefits health and disability claims, higher productivity, and greater resilience, just to name a few!
In our last communication piece, we talked about the importance of paying attention to the mental health of our employees, but what about their physical health?
Many of us are:
- Sitting at workstations that are not ergonomically correct.
- Forgetting to take breaks and remaining sedentary throughout most of the day.
- Working longer days as the barrier between work life and home life becomes blurred.
- Making less than ideal food choices, given our fridges and pantries are never far away.
- Not making exercise a priority with gyms being closed or harder to access, sports seasons being postponed, and group classes that used to keep us accountable no longer running.
With many people still working from home it is more important than ever to consider this question: Is your culture one that inspires and supports healthy human behaviour — like taking care of your physical health?
|We can suffer through this pandemic in one of two ways:||You can inspire and support healthy employee behaviour by:|
|By choosing to be sedentary
By participating in regular exercise.
|– Offering ergonomic support to your people. This can be done via self-serve resources, by accessing resources like the ones listed below, or they can be done remotely, with an expert. If you have questions, just let us know.
1. Setting up Your Workstation at Home
2. Keeping Safe & Healthy Working from Home
– Starting a fitness challenge like top of the hour push-ups. On the hour, everyone does five, even during internal meetings. Another idea: finding a free YouTube fitness channel and rotating through who picks the weekly workout video.
|By fueling ourselves with an unhealthy diet
By making healthy nutritional choices.
|Accessing your Employee Assistance Plan for diet and nutritional support. If you don’t have an EAP, give us a call! We can talk you through the service.
Checking to see if your plan covers dieticians. If it does, get the word out. A personalised nutrition plan can be a game changer.
Using grocery delivery services as rewards.
|With un-managed stress and poor boundaries
By choosing to take breaks, unplugging, meditating, resting and taking care of ourselves.
|Checking to see if your plan covers counseling – either through paramedical or an EAP.
Offering a partially paid monthly subscription to a meditation and sleep app, like “Calm.”
Blocking a 15min morning meditation session into everyone’s calendars.
Talking about it. Sharing our own personal challenges can create connection and create a safer space for others to do the same. Sometime just talking and knowing you are not alone makes all the difference.
Check out Wellness Together Canada. It is a free resource funded by the Government of Canada in response to the unprecedented rise in mental distress due to the COVID-19 pandemic
Keeping your email communication to business hours and congratulating others for doing the same.
If additional resources are available in your organization you may want to explore offering Employees, a Lifestyle/Health Spending Account (HSA). HSA’s send a supportive message and provide employees with some flexible benefit credits to focus on personal health and wellness or purchase home office equipment to ensure a safe and productive workspace.