In today’s economy, workplaces are trying harder than ever before to get their employees to be more productive and healthy. Being successful at this task is not always that easy. Workplaces often fumble with their attempts to create programs and policies that attempt to improve the way their workers function and the health they experience.
There are several things an organization can do in order to maximize their efforts to bring about a healthy stability among their workforce. For example, the workplace must attempt to create an environment that promotes the best possible health. According to a recent survey, however, while 85 percent of companies intended to go about creating a healthier culture among employees, only ten percent of employees felt that this has been accomplished.
Companies need to tackle the lifestyle related diseases that so commonly affect today’s population. These include habits like eating poorly, smoking, drinking and having too little exercise. Experts believe that the employer needs to apply the concepts of motivation, triggers for the action they desire and opportunity to accomplish them. Motivation implies the use of incentives for good health which are often necessary. Employers also need to trigger a response in their employees that give them the impetus to get moving. Finally, they need to give employees the chance to accomplish their health goals.
Employers need to have employees involved in the planning and execution of programs that can improve their health. They need to find out what the employees are most interested in and what motivates them the most. They need to find our which things make the best reward system for good lifestyle behavior on the employee’s part.
Research shows that most employees (up to 86 percent) of employees didn’t know what programs were going on in their own organization. Employers were busy creating programs but were failing to properly inform the employee as to the nature of the programs being developed. This points to the necessity of engaging employees in the healthcare process so that those who would most benefit from a healthcare or wellness program understand what’s going on and are better willing to participate.
The employer can’t expect to make huge changes in their employees’ lifestyle and health, and expect wholehearted cooperation. In fact, lifestyle changes are best made through small but defined changes that are reinforce as the employee becomes successful at the little things that add up and make a difference in the end. Financial incentives for doing good work in improving wellness that are too far away in the future will reduce the ability of the incentive to be helpful. For example, employers can use game mechanics and social networking to improve success in doing the healthier thing.
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