How Three Michigan Businesses Prioritize Employees’ Health and Wellness
Most business owners know: The healthier their employees are, the happier and more productive they are. That’s why workplace wellness programs are so important. Studies show that fully fledged workplace wellness programs increase morale and lower absenteeism, helping companies grow and thrive. And that’s why many Michigan business owners have launched their own initiatives centered on the health and happiness of their employees.
Three local companies, with support provided by onsite, Blue Cross coordinators, have created successful workplace wellness programs that focus on small changes for big results. Use the examples below as inspiration—many aspects of these programs can be adapted and tweaked to fit your own company’s culture.
- Prioritize Healthy Living with Incentives. Livingston County participates in the state-wide Michigan Health & Wellness 4×4 Plan, which prioritizes maintaining a healthy diet, engaging in regular exercise, getting an annual physical exam and avoiding tobacco use. To make sure employees are hitting those goals, Livingston County offers a monetary bonus for completing an annual health assessment through Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and getting a physical. Employees are also reimbursed for health-related activities and gear, such as smoking cessation programs and yoga equipment. This year, they’ve also added free flu shots for all employees.
- Create a Health Series. Kalamazoo County’s primary objective of the workplace wellness program is to provide preventive screenings and lifestyle assessments to employees. The culture is all about two goals: “Do Your Part” and “Know Your Numbers.” A number of on-site activities are available, including kickboxing classes, a 30-day stress reduction program, beginner’s meditation classes and a men’s health series. And it isn’t just for the employees themselves: Kalamazoo County is committed to making many of these opportunities available to employees’ families.
- Work with a Workplace Wellness Coordinator. The Woodbridge Group actively works with a Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan wellness coordinator to support a robust program (85 percent of employees participate). Friday Wellness Walks bring colleagues from across departments together for a relaxing and social break outdoors, health fairs teach them how to cook simple and nutritious meals and how to use exercise equipment so they’re more confident at the public gym. Some events, like their Breast Cancer Awareness Walkathon, also raise money and awareness for local nonprofits.
For more thought starters on workplace wellness and building a stronger professional community, check out these blogs:
- Wellness Programs: A Smart Investment in Your Company’s Future
- Diversity Initiatives Enables Collaborative, Motivated Work Culture
- What is Group Life Insurance and Do Your Employees Need It?
Photo Credit: MetCreations