A few weeks back, we wrote a piece about the benefits of employee wellness programs. When implemented carefully, wellness programs can make for a happy, productive workforce. In some cases, companies can also enjoy lower insurance rates, lower employee turnover rate, and better communication between employees at all levels.
We put this topic in our rotation because we are serious about health & safety at TriMedia – and really try to practice what we preach. One of our team members (not ironically) in our health and safety department proposed we put together a health and wellness challenge to encourage healthy habits. It inspired our first blog post, and inspired participants to adopt some serious lifestyle changes.
Here’s what we did.
TriMedia has people working all over the country, so we are always looking to bring them all together outside of the one annual meeting we have each year. When the idea came up to invite everyone to participate in a health & wellness challenge, it seemed like a great solution.
After scouring the internet for examples of corporate wellness challenges, we decided on a few basic things:
1. We didn’t want to gauge success on weight loss.
2. We wanted the incentives to be cost-effective, but worth working towards.
3. We wanted it to facilitate friendly communication outside of work matters.
4. We wanted the healthy habits formed during this challenge to stick.
5. We wanted it to be fun.
Of course, we had to tailor it to our company – wide geographical area, large staff, and huge difference in interests of both diet and exercise. We came up with a hybrid challenge to cater to our wide audience. Points were earned daily based on diet and exercise for that day, and each individual was responsible for keeping track of their activities. It was an honor system – no tracking devices were required, although a few people used them if they already owned them.
In search for an online system that could be accessible from both desktop and mobile, we came across Daily Endorphin Wellness Challenges. It is fully equipped with fitness and nutrition logs, customizable challenges, and customer support. Pricing ranges from free to $12/user/year, so is fully scalable to any needs.
We had discussed a very specific point structure, but making it fit into Daily Endorphin’s customizable challenges changed it a bit. It worked for our needs, but we might do some things differently next time.
The challenge ran for a full 30 days, during which time we all got to chat about our experience in a private Facebook group. We even offered points for sharing recipes with the group (as long as there was photo evidence!), which we could track right in Daily Endorphin. Using Facebook added a fun social aspect to a group spread across the country, and served as a channel to encourage each other.
Although we were all in the wellness challenge together, obviously there were prizes we were all gunning for. We offered up three different prizes, one for the overall winner, nutrition winner, and fitness winner.
All said and done, we had excellent participation. After the winners were announced, we collected feedback from the participants, which was for the most part positive. Most importantly, everyone who participated learned something they could do to improve their health and wellness. Even small things like minor changes in diet, getting up and moving your body more, exercise, or sharing a favorite healthy recipe with co-workers can make big impacts our health and wellness. Now we face another challenge – how do we keep the healthy habits going?
Have you ever done an employee wellness challenge at work? Did your healthy habits stick?