If wellness isn’t a priority for your small business, you may want to re-evaluate. A healthy team can mean more productivity, lower costs and less employee turnover. So if you’re looking to improve your wellness initiative, here are 20 tips you can use.

Ways to Improve Wellness at Work:

Change Up Your Vending Machine Options
If you want your employees to be healthy, then they need to eat healthy. But if your kitchen or vending machines down the hall are stuffed full of candy and salty snacks exclusively, then they’re likely to fall into some pretty bad eating habits. Instead, contact your vending machine company to see what healthy options they have available or bring in some healthy options to share in the office kitchen.

Keep an Exercise Goal Chart in the Office
You can also encourage exercise among your team by making it easy for everyone to encourage one another and stay accountable. Set up a goal chart in your office where employees can add their own exercise or health goals and update everyone on their progress.

Organize a Team for a Charity Race
Exercise can also provide some unique team building opportunities. Research charity events in your area to find walks or runs that will let you register as a team. Then recruit people in your office to participate so you can all train and raise money for great causes together.

Provide Maps of Local Walking Trails
If there are any walking trails or unique outdoor areas in your community, you could put together a map for your team to encourage them to walk or run those areas on their own time.

Hold Walking Meetings
When you’re having quick meetings with a few members of your team, why not incorporate some exercise at the same time? If you don’t need access to specific items or equipment, hold a walking meeting so you can get an easy workout in as well.

Have Healthy Potluck Meetings
Even if you do need to have more traditional meetings in a conference or meeting room, you can add a healthy twist. Ask each attendee to bring in a healthy snack to share instead of relying on doughnuts and coffee alone.

Offer Incentives to People Who Walk or Bike to Work
Some of your employees might also be able to get a quick workout in during their commute. For those who live relatively close to the office, you could encourage them to walk or bike to work through an incentive program or even a walking or biking club.

Have an Early Morning Stretch
Stretching can be a great way to activate muscles and get in the right mindset for the day. So gather your team first thing in the morning for a quick stretch, meditation or yoga routine to start each day off right.

Host an Exercise Equipment Swap
There’s a good chance that some members of your team have workout equipment at their homes that they no longer use. So why not give that equipment new life by passing it off to someone else? Host a swap so your team members can bring in the gear they no longer use and trade it in for new (to them) items.

Negotiate Health Club Discounts for Employees
You could also find a nearby gym or health club and try to negotiate a group rate for your employees in order to convince more of them to join.

Provide Nutrition Related Posters and Brochures
Sometimes, arming people with information is the best way to get them to make a change. Put up some posters or brochures around your office with healthy eating tips or unique exercise methods so your employees can learn from them.

Offer Standing Desks
Sitting at a desk all day can be a major detriment to the health of office workers. But you can offer standing or hybrid desks to give your employees the option to stand or move around more throughout the day.

Send Out Daily Stress Relief Tips
Stress can be another factor that can negatively impact your team. But you can try to combat that through simple tips or stress relief methods that you can send out via email at the beginning of each day or week.

Celebrate Employee Milestones
When your employees realize some of their fitness or healthy eating goals, it’s important to recognize and celebrate those accomplishments to encourage them to keep going. Congratulate them in the weekly meeting or even offer a small incentive for major accomplishments.

Incentivize Smoking Cessation
If you have any smokers in your office, encouraging them to kick the habit could lead to a major wellness win for your team as a whole. You could offer a small bonus or other incentive to encourage team members to quit, if that’s one of their major goals.

Host a Weight Loss Challenge
You could also get your whole team involved in a company-wide weight loss challenge. Divide your team into departments or smaller groups and track the progress of each teams through several months so that you can reward the winning team at the end of the contest.

Create a Wellness Newsletter
To regularly update your team about wellness issues and to offer tips and progress updates, you can start a weekly or monthly newsletter that focuses specifically on wellness for your team.

Collaborate on a Healthy Office Cookbook
You can also get your whole team involved by asking them to share their favorite healthy recipes and then compiling them into a healthy cookbook to share.

Host Regular Health Fairs
Each year or quarter, you could also host a health fair at your workplace where you can invite various health service providers like those that can provide screenings, offer healthy snacks or even provide fitness guidance.

Ask for Employee Input
As with any major employee initiatives you start in your business, it’s important to get input throughout the process. Have a survey or just have conversations with your employees about what they think would help improve wellness around the office.

By Annie Pilon, as published in Small Business Trends on 2nd February 2017

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