Addressing Health and Wellness in the Workplace

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.- Companies are stressing the care for employee health and well-being to boost engagement in the workplace. Research from the CDC has shown that employees in good health are more likely to deliver higher performance at work. Healthy employees have a better quality of life which improves their mental health and overall wellness.  

Company Culture in Health and Wellness  

It is important for companies to maintain work-life balance and part of that is encouraging employees to have better health. Wellness benefits can include employee recognition, paid time off, community outreach, professional development and leadership training. 

Employers are not only offering health insurance, companies are also seeking opportunities to build supportive environments. Over the past 50 years, workplace wellness has grown as the economy has stepped away from industrial and has transitioned into digital.   

Wellness is critical to retention and engagement. More than 9-in-10 organizations across the globe offer employees at least one kind of wellness benefit, and more than 3-in-5 have dedicated wellness budgets. Employee well-being is essential for personal and professional success and employees want companies to address the matter.  

Mental health is becoming an increasingly important part of culture. 86% of respondents in a survey conducted by Harvard Business Law thought that a company’s culture should support mental health. 75% of Gen Zers and over half of Millennials left professional roles for mental health reasons.  

This generational shift in the priority of addressing mental health in the workplace is vital for organizations and companies to understand. The precedent of company culture begins with leadership and works its way through the entirety of the company.  

Relax, Recharge, Rest 

Sleep is an important contributor to the overall health of an individual. A lack of sleep can lead employees to low performance at work and can affect long-term health. Harvard University found that insomnia results in the loss of an estimated 11.3 days of productivity each year. Performance and sleep correlate hand-in-hand with each other. Adequate sleep allows for clear thinking, quick learning ability, and complex decision making.  

Employers can assist employees in improving their health by encouraging work-life balance, encouraging employees to use their time off or offering more flexibility in working from home are measures employers take to help prioritize the importance of sleep.  

Healthy Eating Habits  

Eating healthy contributes to how individuals function on a day-to-day basis at work. When employees prioritize healthy eating, they are empowered to live healthier lives. Productivity increases with essential nutrients, boosting power and energy during the workday.  

Exercise and Ergonomics  

Exercise increases employees’ health and productivity levels. Exercise reduces stress, improves sleep quality and encourages individual health and wellness. Studies have shown individuals who work in an office, desire to have workstations that support their physical health in the work environment.  

Ergonomics is the study of people in their working environment. An ergonomist designs or modifies the work environment to mold with the employee, not the other way around. The goal is to eliminate discomfort and risk of injury due to work. In other words, the employee is the first priority in analyzing the setup of a workstation.  

At FWF employees are encouraged to utilize the sit-stand desks throughout the office. The sit-stand desks decrease the risk of weight gain, lower the risk of heart disease, minimize back pain, and increase energy/productivity. 

Time with Loved Ones 

Being surrounded by loved ones and investing quality time outside of work with them is crucial to the health and wellness of employees. This translates into the work environment. It is critical to have a healthy work-life balance and employers who encourage this aspect are seeing higher retention rates and employees who are happier and more productive at work. 

Individuals surrounded by family, friends, loved ones or pets show an increase in their happiness and overall health. Research shows something as simple as caring for a pet boosts health and wellness. 

Pets can assist with health and wellness by increasing the opportunity to exercise, along with decreasing blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Pets provide loving companionship that lowers feelings of anxiety and depression. Tyler Erickson, a valued member of the FWF team, shares his thoughts on the importance of pets for mental health and wellness.  

Lily enjoying a day at the FWF office.

“I’ve been a big dog person my whole life and my first year in a dogless home in college I decided it was time to get one of my own. Five years and another dog later, Murphy and Lily are not only my best friends, but they are my family. There is nothing better than getting home after a successful day at work and being mauled with love by 135 lbs. of fluff.” 

Tyler Erickson, Business Development Manager at FWF 

Compassionate Leadership 

It begins with leadership and the ability to understand your employees. Compassion is the ability to listen and empathize. It is shown when a company’s top leaders support and care for individuals in the organization both professionally and personally. Leadership represents culture. At FWF, we develop exceptional leadership that drives our team to become influential members within our community and industry. 

Flexible Workplace Policies 

The structure and flexibility companies offer to their employees are vital to their personal well-being. Performance and well-being increase in environments that allow for flexibility. This includes remote work, paid time off, sick days and more. Policies need to be visible and clear to help employees understand their benefits.  

Overview 

At FWF, employees come first. Through competitive benefits, caring leadership and unmatched culture, employees are ensured health and wellness are of utmost importance.  

“FWF has always been focused on creating well-rounded employees both inside and outside of the office. Our goal is to empower and equip our employees with the tools and benefits that allow them to find long term personal and professional success. Whether it be the flexibility to work from home, paid time off to recharge and relax, or our strong push to get all employees enrolled in our 401(k) program, we want to promote an environment that helps both our employees and FWF succeed.” 

-Nicholas Tazzioli, Human Resources Director at FWF 

FWF provides continuous opportunities for team members to succeed through events, rewards, and a healthy work-life balance. 

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