It’s not all in your head: It does get harder to keep employees healthy during the winter. Illness seems to spread overnight, you can’t encourage your employees to hold walking meetings out in the sunshine and there’s a definite lack of fresh local fruits and vegetables to buy for the kitchen. But all’s not lost. Keep reading for tips on how to keep employees healthy (helping them focus on their work and be more productive) no matter how low the thermometer drops.
- Offer flu shots at work: Protecting your employees from the flu will help keep everyone healthy and reduce the likelihood of illness spreading throughout the office. And a flu shot is the best defense. Make it easier for your employees to get one by bringing nurse practitioners to the office. Local pharmacies are often able to send a nurse to administer the vaccine for a reasonable cost. Smaller companies can organize an outing to the local pharmacy to receive shots together.
- Watch the office temperature: Colder temperatures actually weaken the body’s natural defenses, so a chilly office can make it easier for employees to get sick with a cold or the flu. An extra benefit to turning up the heat: Research shows a temperature of 71.6 degrees will help your employees be the most productive. If your office is made up of more women than men, keep in mind that women require more heat to stay warm.
- Keep your employees happy: A study in the Journal of Psychiatry reports that six percent of the U.S. population suffers from seasonal depression. Do what you can to keep spirits bright at work. Have regular conversations about workloads, schedule fun social events and even try installing “happy lights” in the office.
- Boost employees’ immune systems: Encourage employees to stay hydrated at work, eat foods high in vitamin C and was their hands throughout the day. You can also pass around antiseptic sprays for them to use on their keyboards and phones. And don’t forget to encourage sick days! You’d rather one employee stay home than come in and spread germs to your entire team.
For more helpful tips on keeping your employees healthy, visit the following blogs:
- Protecting your Employees from the Flu is Good for Business
- Employers: Sign Up for Fall Session of “Win by Losing” Weight-Loss Challenge
- Wellness Programs: A Smart Investment in Your Company's Future