There are 3 simple things you need to build a wellness program and a healthy living culture in your workplace. Keep the building blocks simple, and watch your workplace change it's view on health.
It is critical in any corporate structure that people know "who to talk to". In most circumstances, dealing with wellness isn't part of anyone's day to day objectives. That means it gets pushed to the side. If it isn't prioritized then one of the largest benefits of a wellness culture is lost, and that is engagement. Creating a wellness board ensures priority is placed on creating ideas, implementing events, and engaging staff. It's a very simple process, and it allows a few members of your team to demonstrate leadership ability outside their typical day to day job. The board itself can serve to be an engagement tool for some.
The next piece of the puzzle is the budget. You will need to spend money on your program to make it connect with staff. There's a lot of options out there, ParticipACTION has just introduced a not for profit program designed by leading experts to focus on getting staff that are the most sedentary, active. No matter the program, there will have to be incentives, and those will carry a cost. I'm sorry to break it to some of you out there. Incentivizing your team with key chains, t-shirts or water bottles with a company logo is not a solid incentive plan. They are great tools to build pride in your workplace, but you're going to want to get more creative on prizing for wellness changes.
The biggest piece of the puzzle, and critical to success is a benefits program. Benefits need to be communicated on a regular basis, along with places and experts to utilize. I've had success with OneFitCity by coming into workplaces, speaking to employees, exciting them to prioritize their health, then giving them a tool and news letter to connect with local experts to use their benefits with. It doesn't take much for a benefit plan to be successful, but there are some critical points to consider. It's always best to engage an expert in the field to build a plan for your team. Benefits are the fastest way to care for your employees, and make them feel like a priority to management.
Start opening up lines of communication with staff on taking care of their health. Get options for your team, and create a group of staff who can monitor and implement change. Build a culture, and watch your productivity levels change. Without our health, we can't produce. Implement a few small changes, and if you're lost contact the Winnipeg Chamber office, they'll be happy to assist you to build a culture of wellness and high productivity.