Implementing a Wellness Program
Using a simple four step procedure, a company wellness program can create a culture where employees, managers, and stakeholders win. The implementation process is designed to be efficient, smart, goal oriented, and can be started right away with very little planning. Begin by identifying a coordinator who is able to dedicate the time needed for the process. Then choose team members from cross areas of the company, which will help create enthusiasm at all levels. It is imperative al l member’s work well as a team.
1. The committee should begin by asking one simple question; what do the employees need? And how do their needs fit with the goals of the company. Assess both sides by surveying employees, members of management and the stakeholders. Committee members will need to understand what each side values most in a wellness program, as well as what the committees’ challenges will be, in order to lay out the frame work of the program.
2. Next, analyze the survey data to determine what will motivate employees and works with the existing culture. Combining wellness education with physical activity is the best way to start building a plan. *Wellness education includes; wellness workshops such as learning to prepare healthy foods, comprehensive weight loss programs, and stress management strategies.* While individual health assessments can help identify potential medical issues, such as high blood pressure or diabetes.*
3. Once comprehensive plans are created, a communication plan must then be created. The plan should lay out the programs framework, while keeping wellness at the forefront. There should be different methods of communication so that all employees are educated. Be sure to include benefits of the program or many employees won’t take advantage of the classes or activities.
4. To help get the program off the ground and encourage the culture shift needed, add an incentive plan. An incentive plan encourages employees to get healthy and achieve the desired results. An example of a positive incentive plan is one that attracts workers to the program but doesn’t have them competing against each other. The best used so far is point based, that rewards employees for their own achievements. Employees can be rewarded points to use towards free travel, shopping sprees, gift certificates, cash bonuses, etc. Employee recognition is a good way to inspire others.
The Affordable Care Act has authorized funds to help small business introduce wellness programs. While working with...