How & Why To Invest In The General Health Of Your Staff

A healthy workforce is more likely to be a happy workforce, and a happy workforce is more likely to be a productive force to be reckoned with. For this reason, it’s important to be clear and consistent when implementing staff management and human resources measures that always prioritize the well-being of your staff.

Moreover, focusing on their health and well-being is so much more effective than addressing the “symptoms of happiness,” like making the team sing a song about how happy they are to support the brand each morning, a demeaning technique that many of us look on with distaste (to say the least).

Consequently, any techniques leveraged to improve your staff’s health and general well-being must be fundamental, sustainable, and in some cases optional and voluntary. After all, our staff are individuals with their own decisions to make, we can’t force them to do anything except fulfil the terms of their contract as agreed. 

So, let’s discuss how and why to invest in the general health of your staff, and to do so reliably:

Remote Working Measures

Remote work is not only a convenience for your team, but an added comfort in the life of your staff. For example, offering one day a week of remote work can not only attract talent interested in this perk, but gives them the chance to rest, avoid the commute, and focus solely on their work without many more distractions.

This kind of work can also expand your talent pool – for instance, being able to hire disabled but highly talented staff can only help benefit you. Many companies try and frame remote work as a privilege bestowed upon their staff, but the convenience of staff productivity enacted from anywhere, comprehensive cloud suites through services such as Microsoft 365, and the ability to video conference (thus booking meetings at any time) can provide managers with so much more flexibility, it also lowers their stress. Sure, your staff might not be indescribably happy 100% of the time, but if you make several steps towards stress reduction, well, that’s equally as worthwhile.

Healthy Refreshments & Snacks

Sure, you don’t have to put on a fully catered function at your office each day, but the truth is that small snacks and refreshments can be ideal. A water cooler, for example, is essential to keep everyone hydrated. But you may also offer a good coffee maker so your employees always feel active and alert, particularly after coming in during a cold, grey morning. You might also offer a fruit bowl for people to make use of.

Investing in the kitchen capabilities such as a clean microwave, kettle, and refrigerator can be ideal. It will allow staff the freedom to warm up their own pre-cooked lunches and to provide themselves with the comforts they need to keep going.

After all, every staff routine can be different. Some might not take breakfast at home, but come in and warm up some oats. You’re not expected to provide full cooking facilities of course, and doing so could be a fire risk. But the more comfort you can offer, the more you can fuel your staff, the better off and more satisfied they are. There’s nothing worse than a hangry workforce.

Fitness & Cycling Programs

While it’s true that the general daily lifestyle your employees live is no concern of yours (provided it doesn’t affect their work or bring ill-repute to your brand), it’s always healthy to encourage good lifestyle habits.

For example, let’s consider the benefits of a cycling scheme. By investing in a scheme that provides cheaper bikes to your staff, and investing in a great bike shelter outside the building, you inspire staff to arrive well-exercised and alert in the morning, you help them dissolve their stress on the way to work, you limit their chance of developing sicknesses due to regular physical activity, and you save a great deal of parking space.

As such, you can also suggest that a bike-to-work scheme is part of your environmental push, another point for your marketers to push. Of course, a healthy and happy workforce, as discussed above, is something you benefit from year-round.

Mental Health Support Plans

It’s not just physical health that needs to be respected and maintained, but mental health, too. Even friendly workplaces can be stressful environments, and the truth is that you might not do anything wrong as a business but see an employee struggling anyway. This is because their personal lives are much more than just what they do for work. In many cases, mental illness is hardly the fault of your employee either, just bad luck that needs to be addressed.

Of course, you can always be proactive and ask your employee if they’re doing okay due to difficult behaviour or missed deadlines/productivity. You should focus on mediation strategies as opposed to punishment. It may be that they admit problems with substances, in which case referring them to the best services can be ideal. Try to be supportive, but also remain certain of what your caregiving duties should offer and where your legal liabilities lie. In some cases, allowing an employee two weeks off could help them gain the emergency help they need.

In some cases, you may come to a mutual agreement that the issues will interfere with their work, and requiring them to come in will only exacerbate the issue. As such, be consistent, communicative, kind, and always open for conversation.

Confidential HR Meetings

Some employees think that your HR is simply the social enforcement arm of your business, but that’s not the case, or at least, you should make it clear that this isn’t the case.

Always ensure your HR service has time for its staff. Make sure all meetings are confidential and reports are secured for appropriate eyes only. Allow an open-door policy and run programs that help staff feel trusted and safe, for example, a reporting system if a staff member is harassed can help you stamp out the issue immediately.

With this advice, you’re certain to invest in the best general health of your staff. It’s the least they deserve.

Isa Lillo


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