Energy, enthusiasm, and camaraderie fuel a high-performance wellness program, but you need to have the right people with the right directions in the driver’s seat. Here’s the WHO, WHAT, WHERE, WHY and HOW to forming an employee wellness committee that will inject passion, teamwork, and, best of all, FUN into your wellness program.
Who: Include a broad mix of employees – not just managers, the most fitness-conscious people, or individuals all from the same department. Have company execs personally invite employees who are respected by their peers. A guideline for size:
- Fewer than 300 employees: 5 to 8 committee members
- 300 to 1,000 employees: 8 to 12 committee members
- More than 1,000 employees: 12-plus committee members (all departments represented)
What: Encourage the committee to focus on:
- Planning: Designing a year-long plan of wellness events, organizing worksite-wide events, finding space for activities, etc.
- Promoting: Recruiting employees to participate in screening, health improvement program, and follow-up counseling; organizing promotional strategies, etc.
- Running: Leading worksite-wide activities, monitoring activities, acting as wellness mentors, etc.
Where: Your wellness committee needs to be supported by the right environment and culture — one that includes shared values and heartfelt beliefs about what’s important. The committee needs to ask, “How well does our worksite support healthy behavior?” The answer should be based on the environment and policies:
- Do the vending machines and cafeteria include healthy options?
- Are stairwells clean, safe, and inviting for individuals to use instead of elevators?
- Do scheduling policies allow employees to participate in physical activity?
- Are employees able to communicate openly, work together as a team, and have fun?
Why: A wellness committee composed of employees gives workers a sense of ownership. Employees can be more effective than management in understanding what’s needed to change a culture and convince fellow employees to give wellness a try.
How: Start by downloading this FREE Booklet – Step-by-Step Guide to Successful Workplace Wellness Programs. It’s filled with insider tricks and tips for how to organize a committee and give them the tools they need for wellness success!