Employees spend a large proportion of their day to day life in the workplace, so employers have a responsibility to influence a number of aspects of employee health and lifestyle, from their eating habits, to the amount of physical activity they are or are not subjected to, the environment and the amount of time spent within the working environment.
We live in the ‘working-age’, spending hours doing physical tasks or spending long periods of time behind a computer and sitting at a desk. It is therefore important to educate employees of the benefits to healthy diets, appropriate physical activities and a positive physical and mental wellbeing.
Why? Because promoting the best workplace wellbeing possible can only have great results: encouraging teamwork, increasing productivity and reducing sick leave.
As Ghandi once said “You must be the change you want to see in the world”, let that start with you and your team.
So how can you promote a healthy lifestyle in your workplace?
With UK employees spending an average of 42 hours at work each week, they are likely to eat one or more meals, plus a number of snacks during the course of their working day. Therefore employers have a great opportunity to promote a healthy diet by positively influencing their workers’ eating habits.
Not only does healthy eating reduce the risk of major illness such as heart disease and high blood pressure, it’s also proven to improve mood, reduce fatigue and increase brain power!
There are many ways to promote healthy eating at work, from providing a fruit bowl for snacking throughout the day, to replacing the crisps and chocolates for healthy options in the vending machines, and even create a place to share your favourite healthy recipes for dinner/lunch suggestions.
Don’t just stop at eating. Supply range of healthy drinks options too, with fresh filtered water and a selection of herbal and decaffeinated teas and coffees as opposed to the full fat, fully caffeinated beverages usually on offer.
Whether it is in a lunch hour or after set office hours, holding organisational-led physical activity can be highly beneficial. Letting a qualified, local personal trainer into your business can create a buzzing culture, release endorphins, increase the heart rate and encourage teamwork.
There are many options with corporate fitness, tailoring each workout to your employees’ capabilities and interests as well as the space available, from circuits, boxing, yoga or HIIT training, an increase to physical activity is a worthwhile investment.
As well as bootcamps, organise and promote active and fun charity events for the team to be involved in, encourage regular breaks away from their desk, and install bike racks for those close enough to cycle. If possible, find a provider who offer a monthly/quarterly physical screening as a routine medical service of your business, checking blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure.
As well as caring for your employees’ physical healthy, their mental health is just as important. Workplaces need to understand that life happens, the boiler breaks down, children are poorly or cars need emergency repairs. Don’t let your employees stress over aspects of life that are out of their control.
No matter the business industry, everyone works differently in a variety of different working styles. There’s no one size fits all with office layouts, so change it up, introduce a variety of layout and collaborative spaces, for brainstorming, informal meetings, conference spaces, informal dining areas as well as a chill space, to allow employees to mediate and collect their thoughts throughout the day.
As well as creating a physical office space for reflecting and thinking and stress consultations, your business should allow a set number of hours each year, set aside for when life happens. No questions asked, no annual leave having to be taken just a number of hours for you to take off work when things don’t quite go to plan!
Sometimes working from the office isn’t the best option all day ever day, we all have good days, and we all have bad days, so ensuring that on those bad days the option to work in a more comfortable place is an option.
Working from home allows for a better work-life balance, reduces stress and more flexibility, it also reduces the business’ carbon footprint, less office space is needed and higher productivity of uninterrupted workers.
We understand that this isn’t an option for all business types, however, offering flexible working spaces, locations and times will allow employees to feel in control of their mental health in the workplace.
How CiC can help support healthy lifestyles within the workplace?
CiC offer a range of specialist services, both locally and internationally to support both employees and managers in the workplace, promoting and assisting with workplace wellbeing.
For more information on how to promote a healthy living in the workplace, call us on 020 7937 6224 or complete our short enquiry form.