How much do you think you can accomplish in 10 minutes? It may seem like an insignificant amount of time, but The Lappan Agency uses these few minutes out of each work day to make a big impact on its overall workplace wellness.
Located in Alpena, Michigan, the insurance agency adopted a “Take 10” program, in which all 17 employees take a 10 minute walk every morning and afternoon. The inspiration for the program came to John Lappan, account executive and co-owner, from the dreary Michigan winters. John said he “kept thinking about how unhealthy it was for all of us to be in an office sitting all day and that just a 10 minute walk would get people moving and refreshed.” Since then, employees have been enjoying the few moments every day to step away from their desks, clear their minds, and head into a more productive afternoon.
The “Take 10” program has also inspired other healthy changes for the company, particularly, healthier food options in the office. The agency has been choosing healthier restaurants for lunches, providing fruits and oatmeal for morning meetings instead of doughnuts, and offering a salad bar at office potlucks. Since beginning the program, they’ve experienced a noticeable increase in energy, which has helped them overcome the dreaded, mid-afternoon slump.
Michele Palevich, operations manager at the Lappan Agency, notes that these small changes are just the beginning of a wellness program that the company plans to expand on in the future. The agency hopes to serve as a good example for other offices that want to implement similar changes in their workplace and demonstrate that something as small as a short walk can have major impacts on a person’s overall wellness.
Palevich suggests that other companies start with a walking program as well because it’s one of the easiest exercises for people and does not require equipment. She also shares that “the benefits are immeasurable – happier, healthier, less stressed and more productive employees, which all lead to happier customers.”
To help stay on the right path for your fitness level and routine, try the following:
- Set a walking schedule
- Recruit a walking buddy
- Map out a route beforehand
Inspired to start your own walking program or to learn more about the benefits of walking? Check out these posts for more information:
• Blue Cross celebrates Walk@Lunch Day in Grand Rapids
• Take the Employee Health and Fitness Challenge this May
• 3 ways fitness programs save employers money