For many people it is a tradition to create a list of resolutions or personal goals to achieve during the New Year. Typical lists include weight loss, becoming physically fit, saving money, advancing their career, etc. But it is just as common for people to abandon their list halfway through the year, before reaching achievement. We have the best intentions and we think we can do this on our own. But as local health and fitness guru Cristy Nickel explains, gym memberships skyrocket during the month of January and early February but quickly dwindle for the rest of the year due to injuries or that lack of results for weight loss. For the most of us, we need the support and guidance of others to achieve our personal wellness goals.
Likewise, many companies have the best intentions when putting together wellness programs. They see rising cost of healthcare and invest in outside vendors to drive health and wellness initiatives. According to the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM), in 2016, over 70% of US employers now offer some kind of wellness programs.
So how can companies ensure achievement of their wellbeing initiatives and not fall victim to a failing trend and abandonment?
There are four components for success:
- Leadership commitment and support. Organizations must integrate health and wellness into their overall vision and purpose. Leadership must lead by example and wellbeing practices must be embedded in the company mission and values.
- Build a culture of health. HR and senior leaders should integrate a “total health” model into business practices: from company policies to everyday work activities. Total health is a holistic focus that includes all facets of a person (sense of purpose, social, financial, community, as well as physical wellbeing). HR should consider policies to include flexible work schedules, creating social support groups, enforcing health and safety promoting policies, and physical environments.
- Employee Engagement. This can only be achieved when your workers own the program and understand not only the person benefits but the company will gain from a successful program.
- Communication. Create a strategic communication plan to notify and engage your entire workforce.
Above all it is important to measure your performance. Set up mile markers and year end goals to measure not only the ROI (return of investment) but also the Value of Investment (VOI). In addition, it is important to ensure that your wellness programs are not discriminatory and are in compliance with the view of the EEOC.
At Weaver and Associates, we are here to help you design and develop a successful wellness program that is customized to you. Call us at 208-938-9726 and let us work with you!