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Let’s face it, work can lead to high-stress situations, which can reduce employee engagement and lead to decreased productivity and employee satisfaction. An Employee Wellness Program is a great way to promote a positive work environment, company culture and encourage employees to be themselves. The workplace wellness program should promote health and allow opportunities for self-improvement and should also include some amazing perks as an incentive.

We’ve outlined some of favorite ideas that will set the precedent of physical, and mental health across your organization:

Book Recommendations: Whether it’s through a Book Club or one-on-one recommendations, the encouragement to continually be reading can be a huge benefit for Mental Health and in turn Physical Health too. Managers specifically can motivate employees through gifting books in an area where they think it would be helpful for an employee to grow or to be further educated on or offer to buy lunch or snacks for book club meetings.

Fitness Reimbursement Stipend: One of the biggest wellness benefits is encouraging physical fitness. Employees can save money on local gym memberships, fitness classes, personal training sessions, or other related health benefits provided by the employer’s program. There is double the perk if your company has a gym and showers in the building! Having healthy snacks in the office can help create a positive impact to ones health too.

Team Coordinated Active Events: This perk may take some commitment to plan but should be relatively easy once the ball gets rolling! Have a group of employees commit to monthly outdoor activities beyond just walking to meetings. There are plenty of seasonal events such as tree lighting, flower shows, or street fairs that take place in local communities. This inspires team bonding as well as can help employees with their fitness and overall health. This sort of corporate wellness program featuring physical activity can help promote weight loss and a healthy lifestyle behavior change with your team members.

Parental Leave: When it comes to well received wellness ideas, a great fully paid maternity and paternity/bonding leave can be a huge way to attract candidates and retain employees. Additional related perks can be at home back-up care for children or for adults/elders who are recovering from an illness. Combined with an environment that encourages healthy living and lifestyle, this can benefit all parties involved. Having accessible facilities for all to use is also beneficial.

Mental Health: It’s important that employees are continually outputting their best work. To ensure that employees have their mental and emotional well-being in place, companies such as Lyft offer their employees free access to licensed therapists. Similarly, Genentech has begun offering its employees Headspace, an app that teaches users how to lead a more mindful life. 

Quarterly Blood Drives: Giving back to others is always a win-win feeling. By hosting in-office blood drives through the Red Cross Blood Donations, an employee can potentially save up to 3 lives, while feeling the importance of volunteering. There are also other exercise and other fitness based charities one can contribute to in the work place, as well as seasonal initiatives for employees like flu shots.

Weekly Chair Massages: Most often people spend the day hunched over their computer. By offering the perk of weekly in-office chair massages, everyone can take a 10-minute break, drop their shoulders down, relax their jaw, and unwind. It will be a really midday treat for everyone who participates and something to look forward to each month!  Desk wise, one can also look at standing desks or adjustable desks to improve health in the office and employers can look at investing in fitness or yoga classes for staff.

Dog-Friendly Office: Who doesn’t love a dog-friendly office? It’s a huge stress-reliever for dog owners who don’t have to run home to walk or feed the dog and also don’t have to pay for dog care services. Also, non-dog owners will be so happy to furry friends to play with.

Nap Pods: If you come across a person who doesn’t love a good nap during their work day – don’t trust them. Sleeping can make a huge difference in your quality in life. That’s why companies like Google and many other Silicon Valley tech-startups began offering nap pods in their offices. If employees need some downtime to rest, they can quietly take the time they need in a comfortable area or break room and come back when they are refreshed to begin working.

We hope you get some inspiration from these wellness activities and Employee Wellness Program ideas so that your team can be well oiled and the blood pressure down. It’s always great to have employee health and wellness programs where there is no need to pressure individuals to participate.

Whether via healthy food such as fresh fruit (instead of some of the traditional office snacks and vending machines!), healthy team building initiatives or incentive within the workplace, a healthy workforce can have real benefits for your bottom line and any money you invest in workplace healthcare costs and wellness initiatives can actually improve your return on investment long-term and keep employee health problems away from your human resource department. This in turn can encourage top talent to work for your company over the long haul. What’s your go-to perk that encourages employees in a way everyone loves?

Additional Resources

Find out more about how to make employee appreciation day everyday

View ideas for healthy work lunches

Awesome Employee Wellness Swag Ideas: