While using words to communicate with employees on wellness, healthy-lifestyle choices and overall well-being is invariably important. The old adage, “actions speak louder than words” still holds water (now, more than ever!). In fact, “being” what you hope employees to “be” may be the most win-win strategy of all when it comes to workplace well-being.
Company leadership and those in charge of well-being efforts can serve as role models for employees, making the chances higher that employees will join in and make their own (and others!) well-being a priority….and not just another “haveta.”
What might this look like? Here are 2 simple ways to power walk the well-being talk.
- Live a healthful lifestyle — Let employees see you doing health-promoting things for yourself and for them. If you want employees to find ways to move more throughout their days, schedule walking meetings or encourage stretch breaks during sitting meetings when you can’t walk because of the nature of the meeting or the number of attendees. Choose healthful options at lunch or as snacks when employees can see you. Better yet, make sure the workplace offers nutritious options in vending machines or cafeterias so that everyone can eat healthfully. If your company is the type to have doughnuts at morning meetings, serve fresh fruits and yogurt instead. In most cases, those in higher roles are (truly) seen as mentors, and can be the best “cheerleaders” for healthy living. Don’t just tell….do.
- Interact with co-workers. Make it a point to get to know those you work with. This promotes social well-being. Ask them what’s new, how they’re doing, what they like, etc. Really pay attention to their answers so you remember next time you see them and can follow up. Even if you don’t have time to chat, smile and acknowledge people as you pass them. Get involved in company-sponsored events, programs and sports teams. Employees seeing you spike that ball during the volleyball game will go a long way toward fostering good relations. And if you’re not the company athlete, no worries. The fact that you try goes a long way in encouraging others to do the same in all areas of their lives. If you think about it, every aspect of life (be it physical, social, career, financial, etc.) entails some type of “jump off the dock” for inner well-being to happen.
Yes, we still believe that communication is crucial to workplace well-being, but we also know that leading by example speaks volumes. So, get out there and take action.
If you need help, we’re always here for you. You can reach the Hope Health team at firstname.lastname@example.org.