Recently, an increasing number of companies have integrated Health and Wellness Programs into their daily work environment. These initiatives come in a variety of different forms: whether it is eliminating unhealthy snacks and replacing them with wholesome organic snacks, or sponsoring a companywide 5k run, the possibilities are endless. Although it may seem that as a small business, you may not have the budget to allocate to creating a successful wellness program, you would be surprised at how much money a small business would actually save by having wellness initiatives for their employees. Here are some options that small businesses have to incorporate wellness into their work environment, and the benefits they provide for the overall success of the company.
1) Have everyone record the number of steps they walk each day (either on your iPhone or using a pedometer). The person who walked the most steps at the end of the week wins a prize, such as an extra vacation day.
2) Partially reimburse gym memberships
3) Provide healthy food options in the office – either snacks or lunch once or twice a week
4) Host in-office meditation or massages once a month.
5) Promote preventive care such as flu vaccinations.
Of course, this all seems like it would cost a hefty sum for a small business. However, it is very important to factor in the money you will be saving by implementing just a few minor health initiatives. Wellness programs actually save the company money in the long run. In fact for every 1$ a company spends on wellness programs, they save 3$ in long term health costs.
By promoting a healthy lifestyle your company can benefit in many ways:
- decreases stress for employees
- increases productivity and overall job performance
- decreases the number of sick days/ unscheduled absences
- increases employee satisfaction
- decreases ER & doctor visits
- decreases prescription costs
If you are a small business operating out of a business center, shared office space, or coworking space, you will have the added benefit of having many resources at your disposal to help you get a program in place. Make sure you take advantage of as many of these opportunities as possible, and see what a difference it can make for your small business!