We don’t claim to be experts on Corporate Wellness, but we built a program here at Pro Athlete that fits our needs. Check out some tips on how we did it:
1. Don’t force it on your employees
You want to create a culture where wellness is prevalent in everything you do. Don’t overpower your employees with lofty weight loss goals or miles per week goals. Create an environment where wellness easily fits into their day. You will have employees who run multiple marathons a year to employees who might reach a big goal by walking for 5 minutes a day. Build the environment where no matter what your goals are, they can be achieved.
2. Even a little something is better than nothing
Don’t stress if you can’t allocate the funds to build a state-of-the-art workout facility. Our program started with one treadmill over 20 years ago and has turned into what it is today. Start there! Or maybe start with a yearly biometric screening process at your facility. As you continue to implement things, you will see what sticks for you and what doesn’t. You won’t nail it right out of the gate, because what works for us might not work for you or another company. But, don’t make the excuse that because we can’t build an amazing facility that we just shouldn’t waste our time. Start with something and then your employees will end up helping you build out the rest.
3. Build it for YOUR business
What makes sense at Pro Athlete might not make sense at Company X. So, if you are building your wellness program, build it for your culture and for your employees. Don’t assume you know what the employees want, ask them. Let them be involved from the beginning and the buy-in will come much easier. We ended up building our own wellness app because the options that we found weren’t curtailed enough to our business and how we wanted our program to work. You don’t have to do this, but make sure you stay true to your culture and values when creating the program.
4. But also get inspired by others
Just because you are building the program for your team and your culture doesn’t mean you can’t get some ideas from other companies. Get out in your city and tour some companies that have wellness programs in place. You know that if their program is awesome enough that you have heard about it, that they sure won’t turn down an opportunity to show it to you.
5. Keep it fresh
Once you have the program rolled out, the real work begins. Now it’s time to continue to improve it. Just like your personal wellness goals that you set to improve yourself, make sure you are constantly trying to improve the program as well. Try to add something new every year to keep people excited.
6. Measure, measure, measure
We don’t mean waist size on this one, but if your program works, you might have some people dropping a few sizes. On this, we mean to set goals and measure progress. Wellness is a roller coaster for everyone. Anyone who tells you they haven’t taken a ride on the wellness roller coaster is lying to you. Don’t let your people get discouraged when they struggle. Use the program to prop them up and give them the desire and support of their peers to get back in line. You can do all this by keeping track of your progress.
7. Celebrate your successes
With your awesome new program implemented and employees seeing changes in how they feel, don’t forget to celebrate. We do a lot of different things here, but one thing we found works is recognition in our Wellness Hall of Fame. We are a sports company with a lot of competitive people and there isn’t anything better than seeing your name enshrined in a hall of fame forever. We also recognize wellness accomplishments at our quarterly all-staff meetings. We have seen several employees moved to tears to hear the stories of accomplishments. Get excited and celebrate the fact that you just created a culture that puts employee wellness at the top.
8. Cherish your successes
A well-done program can see some results that you never would have imagined. You might help an employee with early detection of cancer through biometric screening, or you might help someone struggling with addiction find a promising path forward. Be proud of the things your wellness program has done for your employees. Big or small successes, they are all important. If you take nothing else away from this article, please take this. When we say to be proud of the successes, at Pro Athlete, we don’t mean anything related to saving money. Sure, that would be a great benefit to go along, but never build your program to try and save on premiums or it will never work. Build it because it’s the right thing to do for your employees. If you do that, your program will be a success!