As the business world continues to evolve, the importance of corporate wellness is becoming increasingly clear. In this article, we’ve gathered perspectives from a diverse group of business owners on the role of corporate wellness in building a healthy and successful business. These industry experts have shared their personal experiences, challenges, and strategies for implementing and maintaining corporate wellness programs. From tips on how to foster a positive work-life balance to strategies for promoting mental and physical health, this article has something for everyone. Whether you’re a small startup or a well-established company, these perspectives can help you understand the importance of corporate wellness and take steps to improve the well-being of your employees, leading to a more productive and successful organization.
Title: CEO & Founder
I’m Martha, the CEO and Founder of The BioCollective — a microbiome company expanding the reach of science. Since my husband’s Parkinson’s diagnosis in 2002, I began learning the science of agriculture, nutrition, environment, infectious disease, Parkinson’s pathology and much more.
Here are my thoughts on your query:
Wellness programs at the workplace improve employee “Health Behaviors.”
Every successful wellness program revolves around behavior modification. People can change their behavior with the proper education, skills, motivation, abilities, and social support. Wellness initiatives are effective at encouraging people to develop and stick with healthy habits. This is the main advantage of or justification for a wellness program. Getting enough sleep, exercising, eating a healthy diet, not smoking, and drinking in moderation are all healthy activities — less chronic disease results from healthier practices, which also reduce health risks. Employee health care costs are lower when there are fewer chronic diseases. Numerous studies have assessed the capacity of wellness initiatives to enhance healthy behavior. Not all wellness initiatives can provide fruitful outcomes. The best results are displayed by those that are well-organized and adhere to efficient behavior modification methods.
Title: Senior Investment Advisor
I’m Bruce, the Senior Investment Advisor, and Credit Consultant at Fair Credit. In addition to working with clients looking to achieve creditworthiness and financial stability, I have 15+ years of investment advisory experience. Here is the importance of corporate wellness for the health of a business.
Reduced medical costs and absence
Companies realized that preventing issues like burnout, stress, and disease related to poor employee well-being was more profitable than addressing them once they arose. Particularly among employees, sedentism increases the risk of diabetes, hypertension, and other disorders. Additionally, those who report being frequently or always burned out at work are 63% more likely to take sick days. In other words, employee satisfaction is highly correlated with absence and expense to employers. As a result, businesses started implementing wellness initiatives.
Increased employee output
On the one hand, research shows that smokers are twice as likely to miss work as non-smokers, while obese workers use three to six more sick days annually than employees of average weight. On the other hand, employees who effectively manage their stress are less likely to burn out. In general, productivity increases as employee well-being increases because motivated employees are more productive.
I hope this helps! Please feel free to let me know if you have any questions!
Title: Founder, Harness Your Power & Professional Development Expert
Company: Harness Your Power LLC
Simply put, corporate wellness programs are imperative for lasting firm success. The impact of wellness initiatives — or lack thereof — permeates nearly all aspects of firm health.
Financially, firms that implement these programs benefit from lower healthcare costs because wellness programs promote healthier decisions and behaviors.
Studies also show that companies that consistently promote wellness have better employee morale which results in better retention rates. This means fewer dollars spent on recruiting, hiring, and training.
In addition to this, increased employee morale typically means higher productivity rates and less absenteeism. Aside from the obvious benefits, this creates a better client experience overall.
In short, organizations with ongoing wellness programs in place see happier, healthier employees which translate to higher productivity and better firm performance.
I predict that wellness will become an even bigger topic of discussion in 2023 because of two important factors. First, Americans are paying more attention to their health following the Covid-19 pandemic. Second, the rise in flexible work arrangements, such as remote work and 4-day workweeks, has led to many employees evaluating how to establish their own version of work/life balance which, for many, is an ongoing mental health exercise.
Title: Founder & HR Executive
Company: Culture Canopy
Without a doubt, the wellness of your employees contributes to the performance and the overall achievements of a business. Healthy, happy & connected employees are going to be more engaged, be able to tap into their creativity and find innovative solutions to answer organizational challenges and opportunities. However, wellness should not be an add on; it needs to be authentically incorporated into the organization’s culture and genuinely lived out and modeled at all levels.
A wellness initiative is not going to solve underlying issues within your culture, and issues within your organizational culture are going to affect your people’s wellbeing. Wellness & culture must go hand-in-hand and there is hard work to do to ensure your culture is one with a wellbeing mindset where everyone is supported and cared for. In turn you will see a healthier, psychologically safer, engaged and more productive workforce driving overall organizational success; winning together.
Title: Member, Leadership Council, Kennedy Forum Illinois
Company: Kennedy Forum Illinois
While I am not involved in issues of mental health in the civilian population, I do help to represent our national veteran community on the Kennedy Forum (https://www.thekennedyforum.org), which is a national nonprofit organization that was created by former U.S. Representative Patrick J. Kennedy in 2013 to set a new standard for the future of healthcare in the United States.
Basically, the issues of mental health for civilians and veterans are the same, e.g., erasing the stigma of mental illness, and providing information on mental health parity for those who have healthcare plans from their employer.
THESE ARE THE ELEMENTS OF MENTAL HEALTH THAT ARE IMPORTANT FOR CORPORATE WELLNESS:
With regard to erasing the stigma of mental illness: We need to BREAK THE SILENCE. We need to turn around the conversation in our companies that no one should be ashamed of having these pathologies. We need to reinforce in our employees that it is the weak person who hides these diseases. It is the strong person…it is the courageous person–who seeks help for these diseases, so as to not put their families, and their communities, in jeopardy. For, it takes courage to ask for help.
With regard to mental health parity: We need to inform employees that, as noted on the Kennedy Forum’s website, “The Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008 (MHPAEA or Parity Law) promised equity in the insurance coverage of mental health and substance use disorder care, but years later mental health parity is still not a reality and too many Americans continue to be denied care when they need it the most. To fulfill the promise of the Parity law, we must hold health insurance plans accountable to comply with the letter and spirit of the law.”
Title: President, Doctor of Chiropractic
Company: City Integrative Rehabilitation
As the owner of City Integrative Rehab, a company providing on-site corporate wellness programs for the past five years, I have firsthand experience with the numerous benefits these programs can bring to employees and businesses. Our programs include chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, and acupuncture services, all delivered directly to our clients’ offices.
In a post-Covid world, we know that employees’ workdays are stretched thin, and the demands on their bodies and minds are more challenging than ever. Forward-thinking companies understand that the competitive currency for businesses in the modern world is no longer just salary; employees want to feel supported through peripheral benefits that affect other aspects of their well-being.
There are many benefits to implementing a corporate wellness program. Some of the main benefits include:
- Improved employee health: Corporate wellness programs can help employees improve their physical and mental health, leading to a decrease in absenteeism, an increase in productivity, and a reduction in healthcare costs.
- Enhanced employee engagement: Corporate wellness programs can help to improve employee engagement by providing a range of activities and resources that enable employees to feel supported and valued.
- Increased productivity: Corporate wellness programs can help to increase productivity by reducing absenteeism, improving employee health and well-being, and boosting morale.
- Improved company culture: Corporate wellness programs can help to create a positive company culture by promoting teamwork, collaboration, and a sense of community.
- Increased competitiveness: Companies that invest in employee health and well-being tend to have lower turnover rates, making them more attractive to top talent. This can help increase competitiveness and improve business performance.
All of these benefits enhance the health of a business by taking care of its most valuable asset: its people.
One of the key benefits of on-site programs like ours is convenience. The on-site corporate wellness approach offers a convenient alternative to traditional, off-site treatment by allowing flexible and efficient appointments and eliminating travel time. During treatment, many of our patients report being motivated to make the trip to the office by their appointment. These revelations make it clear that our services not only improve employee health and well-being but also help to reduce absenteeism and increase productivity. Another important discovery we made while treating patients in their offices is that many of them seek care for their conditions before they become severe. For example, many of our patients complain of moderate neck or lower back pain that they would not have addressed if our in-office services were unavailable. These conditions are not severe enough to miss work right now but will likely become severe eventually. Many injuries that cause people to miss work have a slow, relatively innocuous onset before becoming severe. Accessible care at work allows people to fix these problems before (and without) needing to miss work.
Every year, Americans spend tens of billions of dollars on musculoskeletal pain in office workers. Corporate wellness programs, especially those that include physical rehabilitation, help to mitigate and prevent these issues. Physical rehabilitation benefits many conditions — all of which are caused or exacerbated by the office work environment. Many businesses, especially those with large pools of knowledge workers (law firms, finance firms, technology companies, etc.), are vulnerable because they neglect this component of employee benefits.
Corporate wellness programs are essential to a successful and sustainable business. As a professional with five years of experience in corporate wellness and over eight in clinical practice, I have seen firsthand the numerous benefits these programs can bring to employees and businesses. By investing in the health and well-being of their employees, companies can set themselves apart from the competition and attract top talent. This ultimately leads to improved business performance and a more sustainable, successful company.
Title: CEO & Founder
Company: Lil Deenies
When it comes to work and life, you can’t have one without the other, and that’s why the concept of a work-life balance is so prevalent within the modern workplace. There’s a fine line between operating at maximum productivity and slipping into toxic productivity territory, where your team is suddenly burnt out and your business is in danger of turning on you. This is why corporate wellness is hugely important for the health of a business, and why it’s so vitally important to implement corporate wellness programs in your organization to ensure your people are happy and healthy.
Title: Sales Director
Company: VEM Group
Corporate wellness programs can be an important factor in the health and success of a business. A well-designed and implemented corporate wellness program can help to improve the overall health and well-being of employees, which can have a range of benefits for the business. These benefits may include:
Improved productivity: Employees who are healthy and well-rested are likely to be more productive at work. Corporate wellness programs that encourage healthy behaviours, such as regular exercise and healthy eating, can help employees maintain their energy and focus, leading to better performance on the job.
Reduced absenteeism: Employees who are healthy and well-cared for are less likely to take time off work due to illness or other health-related issues. This can help to reduce absenteeism and improve overall attendance rates.
Lower healthcare costs: Employees who adopt healthy behaviours as part of a corporate wellness program are likely to experience fewer health problems, which can help to reduce healthcare costs for both the business and the employees.
Improved morale and retention: Employees who feel their employer cares about their health and well-being may be more satisfied with their job and more likely to stay with the company. This can help to reduce turnover and improve overall morale.
Yoav Morder Morder
Title: Search & PR director
Corporate wellness is vital for the health of a business. It helps a business reduce HR and related costs and improves the performance and productivity of employees. Modern business scenarios are more demanding for employees and thus most employees face many physical, psychological, and financial problems. These problems have many negative impacts, such as burnout and stress, on the overall health of the business because they are directly related to employees. That is why we believe preventing these problems through a corporate wellness program is less expensive than reacting to all these problems when they have already happened. Being a metric to measure corporate wellness, addressing these problems, is very important for the health of a business. Several surveys related to corporate wellness find that on average 65% of employees who suffer burnout or stress at work are more likely to be absent and have low productivity. This means that employee well-being is directly related to absenteeism, productivity, and performance and its cost to employers. Providing the best well-being for employees through a corporate wellness program helps ensure the improved health of a business.
Ivan Lovre Marusic
Company: RPG Overload
Corporate wellness can be an important aspect of our company’s overall health and success. We have found that investing in the health and well-being of our employees can lead to a variety of benefits, including:
- Improved productivity: When employees are healthy and feel good, they are more likely to be productive and engaged in their work.
- Reduced absenteeism: Companies with strong corporate wellness programs tend to have lower rates of absenteeism, as employees are less likely to take time off due to illness or stress.
- Enhanced company culture: A focus on employee wellness can help create a positive company culture, which can be attractive to potential employees and customers.
- Increased employee retention: Employees who feel supported in their health and wellness goals are more likely to stay with a company longer.
Overall, corporate wellness programs can be a valuable investment for businesses, as they can help improve the health and well-being of employees and contribute to the overall success of the company.
Company: Joanne H Light Coaching & Consulting
I have had administration and management experience in higher education. The culture at the college professed openness and inclusivity, but in actuality there was little evidence of this, and enrollment was affected. Decisions made often did not include the parties affected. Leadership did not reflect communication and collaboration.
Corporations and businesses today are becoming more self aware and cognizant of the need to hire and promote staff that are emotionally intelligent. EI is critical for leadership to set the tone that provides employee engagement and satisfaction. This leads to productivity and an improved bottom line. If a corporation wants to effect change and promote growth, EI training for all staff is critical.
EI leads to better conflict resolution, authentic communication, and resilience in the community from top management to lowest end workers.
I use all the concepts of EI in my practice of coaching parents many of whom are involved in the corporate world. People with EI can identify their own emotions and those of others. It means they can recognize the effects of their behavior and that of their peers, coworkers, kids, and bosses. A leader or CEO with this ability will bring out the best in their community . Leaders with empathy perform more than 40% higher in employee engagement and decision -making (ISEI). HR personnel are more often than ever seeking candidates with EI in their hiring practices. When EI is valued and taught, burnout is less prevalent and productive team work is more prevalent.
Wellness in any organization leads to better employer-employee relationships and provides an environment for change, growth and creativity.
Title: Therapist, Group Facilitator
Company: Growth Point Collaborative Counseling and Group Facilitation, PLLC
The wellness of employees, as supported by their corporate employers, is paramount to the robust wellness of the business. What else is a business made of, but people, and for what other reason would it exist? People should have access to wellness-supporting resources in every area of life, including their work place.
In collaborations I’ve done with medical facilities and financial advisory institutions, I found that people were largely unaware of the scope and validity of their suffering. Until I provided them with information about symptoms of burnout syndromes, and provided psychoeducation about trauma, people in those workplaces had not taken their personal suffering seriously. Once their experience was brought into the open in a workplace appropriate way, several of the people who attended my presentations sought mental health support for themselves outside of work.
Possible impacts of mental health struggles going unsupported include low productivity, low staff cohesion, decreased work integrity, and high turnover, not to mention the multiplying effect of contagion. One person with low morale impacts another, and unhealthy relationship dynamics proliferate. Imagine working for a place that feels like a petty drama-infested dysfunctional family, and tell me you wouldn’t dread going to work.
Instead, imagine a workplace where people are on a shame-free journey toward wellness, accepting of their own and others’ imperfections along the way. Imagine a workplace that can lift itself up from setbacks with a healthy growth mindset. Imagine a workforce that is emotionally literate, and capable of safely delivering feedback, with an altruistic value system that does not thrive on competition.
The pursuit of mental health results in emotional maturity and self-actualization. If people discover they shouldn’t be in a specific role, they might be more likely to move toward something that complements their aptitudes and desires. What would a business look like with workers who are well enough to deliver efficiently, and go back to their fulfilled personal lives completely unscathed. Sounds like a winning team to me.
Title: Holistic Doctor/Writer
Company: Nature’s Rise
Corporate wellness is an investment that can often be overlooked but ultimately carries significant rewards. Wellness initiatives in the form of gym memberships, healthy snack options, and mental health days create an atmosphere that encourages employees to take time to look after themselves. These self-care initiatives have a measurable impact on one’s productivity. With better mental and aesthetic work environments, businesses can improve employee morale and retain talented team members.
Corporate wellness is a worthwhile investment in human capital as employees who have sound minds and healthy habits have less absences and work more efficiently. It also helps to project a forward-thinking image that keeps up with changing times, which is something essential for any successful long-term business plan looking toward the future.
Corporate wellness is an absolute must for any company that wants to succeed.
As a business owner, I’ve seen firsthand the difference that a culture of wellness can make. It’s not just about feeling good — it’s about making smart decisions and anticipating challenges ahead of time.
When you have a workforce that is healthy, happy, and productive, you’re going to see better results in every aspect of your business. You’ll see increased productivity and lower turnover rates, which will save you money on hiring and training costs. You’ll also see fewer sick days are taken, which means less lost revenue from missed work hours.
So how do you get there? The key is creating an environment where people feel supported in their efforts to live healthier lives both at work and outside of work. This means providing easy access to healthy food options (and maybe even offering incentives like discounts on gym memberships), encouraging physical activity during lunch breaks or breaks throughout the day (walking meetings!), and providing resources for employees who want help getting into shape or improving their diet but don’t know where to start (like nutritionists).
Corporate wellness is critical to the health of a business because the wellness of employees impacts every facet of business success.
There is much data available that indicates the state of the workforce, and the link between wellness and the bottom line. Gallup recently found that only 21% of employees were engaged at work, and only 33% were thriving in their overall well-being, with low engagement costing the global economy $7.8 trillion. This matches our own recent data at MEvolution, which shows the majority of employees are in an energy-neutral state, where they may not be completely exhausted or depressed, but they are far from thriving.
According to Gallup’s Negative Experience Index, measured as a part of their Global Emotions Survey and which looks at pain, worry, sadness, stress, and anger, they have seen it steadily up ticking since 2016. Sadly, they also recently saw that the Positive Experience Index score dropped for the first time after several years of stability. This indicates that the world is more stressed out, and unhappier, than ever before. The pandemic certainly shone a spotlight on the state of organizational health, well-being, and resilience that could no longer be ignored. Even the U.S. Surgeon General has called it a priority, and with 76% of U.S. workers reporting at least one symptom of a mental health condition, has provided a framework for Workplace Mental Health and Well-Being. This demonstrates the importance of well-being at work at all levels, from the individual themself to the organization, to the country, and has played a role in driving what wellness means to, rightfully, go far beyond the classic gym access or healthy snacks. While these types of initiatives are beneficial as a part of a wellness strategy, they are no longer enough. Employees, more than ever before, are looking for workplaces that allow them to be their best selves, live their best lives, and that truly cares for them as humans. Research by Oracle, demonstrated that 88% of workers now measure success differently. Many are no longer willing to put up with a working environment that takes a toll on their physical and mental well-being, with what they value now including work-life balance, mental health, and purpose, over a steady paycheck. It is no wonder that we see organizations that take a whole human approach, tending to the physical, emotional, and mental needs of an employee, reap the widespread benefits in several ways.
With chronic disease accounting for a large percentage of healthcare costs, those that provide employees with the tools, knowledge, and support needed to maintain their physical health, and take preventative measures, can combat the costly issue of absenteeism.
Researchers from Harvard looked at the link between wellness programs and healthcare costs and found significant savings, with the average return on investment being $3.27, and absenteeism costs falling by roughly $2.73 for every dollar spent.
While businesses feel the impact of absenteeism when employees take days off from work, presenteeism can be harder to see. However, it is causing even more damage to a company’s success. Presenteeism is when employees are physically at work but are not at full capacity. Whether this is from pain, stress, or mental distractions, the cost to employers is high, with current estimates showing that presenteeism in the United States is costing more than $150 billion per year, far greater than that of absenteeism. This has a far-reaching impact on productivity, performance, and profitability. Yet, given the challenges in measuring and understanding each employee’s individual needs, many organizations focus the majority of their attention on more direct healthcare cost-related issues.
To avoid a depleted, unmotivated, and disengaged workforce, and foster a thriving one, it is, therefore, essential to focus on human capacity, so that people have the mental vitality and fortitude needed to succeed. We have seen that by equipping employees with an understanding of their personal psychology and their individual blockers to success and providing them the tools they need to understand and manage their personal energy, the benefits to business health are many. After 12 weeks of learning and development focused on personal energy management we have seen increased well-being, with 80% experiencing less anxiety and stress and 50% feeling less burnt out; increased productivity, with 50% able to complete more tasks; and increased engagement at work, with 50% feeling happier and more fulfilled. We have even seen an increase in creativity, with employees having more mental space for ideation; higher levels of inclusion, as people have the capacity to step back and see other perspectives; and resilience with people better able to regulate their emotions and navigate the unknown, volatile, or challenging situations.
Building a culture of wellness, where wellness is not a siloed initiative or an afterthought, fosters motivation and loyalty. Organizations in which leaders authentically role-model healthy habits, and demonstrate a commitment to employees’ health, vitality, and meaning, through their investments, create environments where employees feel cared for and valued as a human, not just as a worker. After all, how well your employees are, is how well your business is. Without employees that are thriving, your business, simply, can’t thrive either.
Cooperate wellness overall increase employee and employer, outcome:
High levels of well-being and job happiness are linked to an enhanced commitment to the workforce, and employee loyalty and engagement. Smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, and inactivity are three major risk factors for chronic illness. Cancer and heart disease are the most expensive illnesses for medical insurance and treatment. Successful corporate wellness initiatives can lower medical and health insurance expenditures for businesses. Reduced risk factors for sickness and injury and generally better health are frequently the outcomes when employers assist employees in their individual health journeys. Wellness programs can improve morale and productivity.3. Wellness programs increase employee retention.
Title: Olympian and CEO
Company: Priscilla Loomis
A former boss told me, “It’s all about the health of the organism”.
I have taken that advice with me in every work environment I have been in and now, moving forward, within my own company.In a business, there are so many moving pieces but every part is vital and important to the success of the “organism”. Corporations and companies are living and breathing things; they are always growing and venturing into new territory. Wellness = positive productivity, better leadership, healthy communication, and overall an environment of prosperity.
Every corporation MUST make wellness a priority if they want to sustain a profitable business.
If your employees are supported through programs that promote wellness, physical and mental health, you incorporate loyalty, dependability, respect, and a commitment to excellence. You show that you care. When people feel and look good they also tend to perform better. I’ve seen it in sports as well as in business over and over again.
Dmytro Kondratiev Dmytro
Title: International lawyer
As an expert in employee health and wellness, I firmly believe that corporate wellness programs are not only important for employee health, but also for the overall health of the business. As the data you cited suggests, unhealthy employees can have a significant impact on a company’s bottom line by reducing productivity and increasing health care costs. Investing in employee health and well-being through corporate wellness programs can not only improve overall employee health, but also lead to a stronger and more productive workforce.
One unusual and non-trivial aspect of corporate wellness programs that I find particularly effective is the use of technology and data analytics. Using technology and data, companies can track the effectiveness of their wellness programs and make data-driven decisions about how to optimize and improve them. This can include everything from identifying the most popular wellness interventions among employees to understanding the impact of specific interventions on employee health.
There has been a wealth of research on the benefits of corporate wellness programs for businesses. For example, a study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine found that corporate wellness programs can lead to significant cost savings for businesses through reduced healthcare costs and increased productivity.
Another study published in the American Journal of Health Promotion found that corporate wellness programs can lead to improvements in employee health behaviors and outcomes, including reductions in absenteeism and increases in physical activity.