Canada’s Healthy Workplace Month : 3 Steps for a Health Initiative that Works

In the context of the Canada’s Healthy Workplace Month that will be held in October, many businesses plan to set up different initiatives that promote the health and wellness of employees in the workplace.
ZEN&CIE has 10 years of experience in organizing all types of activities in work environments. We created this simple 3 steps plan in order to increase the chances of success of your next activities.

1. Determine the Axes of Intervention
You can easily determine the needs and interests of your team with quick surveys or within you group insurance data. If you know that a big part of your employees has musculoskeletal chronic pain, sleep disorders or that the use of antidepressants is increasing, you can base your first activities according to these revelations.

Your chances of engagement and participation are more likely to be higher if you target exactly what people need. You can also adapt your activities to join two problems frequently encountered within your employees.

We recommend establishing an action plan that only targets a few problems to begin with. That way, it will be easier to control your activities and results.

2. Establish a Clear Program and a Good Communication System 
After you decided on your first axes of intervention, you have to choose how the program will be conducted and what activities or formation you’ll offer. There is a large range of possible activities and you want your employees to know exactly what they should be expecting.  The type and frequency of activities will mainly depend on the workplace context (target clientele, type of work, work schedules, environment, etc.). Will your program offer weekly or monthly classes? Will all your classes will concentrate on the same body part or will they be varied?

Then, in order to maintain a good participation rate, the way you communicate is important. Unfortunately, many companies plan activities but can’t find a way to reach their employees and to maintain their interest. The employees need to clearly know how they will benefit from your activity. You have to work on the “ What’s in it for me” to prove your employees that spending their lunch hour doing yoga will benefit them!

3. Follow Up with the Participants 
Even if people have the best intentions to keep on doing the new activity you offer, changes may be hard and new habits take time to kick in. With a quick follow up once or twice every month with the participants, you will be able to react quickly if you realize that people lose interest in the activities. In every practice, it is important to maintain regularity. Without any follow up, it is easy to forget about the health and wellness notions you are trying to implement.

Plan some follow up exercises or meetings, do it regularly and plan on providing different tools to help participants staying engaged and active.
  • Here are a few ideas to get you started with your next activities for the Canada’s Healthy Workplace Month :
  • A series of interactive mini-classes (4 to 8 weekly sessions) on how to improve your sleep or how to achieve a state of complete mindfulness.
  • A workshop on stress management, including a short practice video and a follow up after one month.
  • Four workshops throughout the year (1 every season) with weekly classes every season (4 seasons with 10 weeks).  

Get Lasting Results

If it’s your first time considering to offer this kind of initiative in your business, you can find inspiration in already proven practices. You can find a lot of ideas on this site. You’ll get faster results and benefits for your business.
We often see potentially good initiatives that end up in the dark because there never was a clear and structured action plan. Your approach of the health and wellness promotion has to be in sync with the values and strategic issues of your company (Buffet & Company). When well implemented and executed, every dollar invested in this kind of program will yield around 2,71$ (Harvard Business School).

Conclusion

Canada’s Healthy Workplace Month is a good moment to start initiatives to promote health and wellness in a professional context. To improve its effectiveness, make sure that your program is focus on only one or two axes of intervention, that the program is clearly stated and that you have a good communication system, and plan some regular follow up with the participant.  What are the activities already in place in your workplace, and how do you measure their success?

About us 

ZEN&CIE is your partner of choice for health and well-being in the workplace. We can assist you in all the stages of your process, so we can find together the ideal formula that meets the needs and interests of your employees. Contact us to get free tips and advices on the implementation of your health and wellness activities.
info@zenetcie.ca | 514-277-7905 | 1-888- 811-1141





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