Employee engagement and wellbeing are closely tied to one another. In fact one directly affects the other, and if resources were to be put in for each of them, it most probably should begin with employee engagement first, to bring about the outcome of improved employee wellbeing.
It has been said that the best thing that brings people together is food and music. But something that follows closely behind are activities that involve fitness-type engagement. These sessions typically allow for increased interaction between individuals, have some element of challenge (either learning and/or competition), and can be very inclusive with little barrier to participate in.
Physical activity simply means that you are involved in movement that promotes elevated heart rate. We know the health benefits include reduced risk of chronic diseases. Other benefits of physical activity include enjoying the after-effects of endorphins and dopamine release which contribute to increased motivations and elevated mood.
Here are 5 tips that you can incorporate into your Employee Engagement strategy, to elevate Employee Wellbeing:
1.Provide Weekly or Regular Instructor-led Physical Activity
A poll must first be put in place to better understand the type of physical activity that employees might be more interested in. Some examples would be yoga, mat pilates, Zumba, and high intensity interval training (HIIT).
A group class gives the employees accessibility to the physical activity and allows the opportunity for co-workers to support one another in trying out a new activity. This promotes added touch points for interactions on non-work related matters and also encourages accountability and supporting each other in specific health and wellness goals of an individual.
In some organisations, these sessions are even employee-led!
2. Fitness Challenges
Fitness challenges are activities that you can add to the yearly calendar to provide additional zest and life to the regular instructor-led physical activities. These typically would last from one week to four weeks with a leaderboard for the top performer and also the top performing team. Investing in novel prizes for the participants will also have everyone more enthusiastic and motivated to join and complete the challenges.
Some examples would be a corporate steps challenge or even an intensity minutes challenge.
3.Physical Activity Education and Awareness
The journey into wellness through physical activity opens up an individual’s curiosity and need to understand why a particular activity is recommended; what other options there could potentially be; and how better can they be benefitting from the activity. These all point towards physical activity education and awareness.
Of course, we might have learnt some of this back in school during physical education lessons, but given how quickly trends have emerged, there is new information, research and ways of doing things.
Rather than leaving employees to find out for themselves through internet search, providing a platform for them to learn more about physical activity either before, during or after actual sessions, is something that you would want to consider providing as well.
The Actxa Wellness Journey With Wellness app-delivered gamified wellness curriculum provides just that. Drop us a message to find out more!
4. Form a Employee Wellness Committee
Have employees lead Employee Engagement initiatives.
There could be a committee formed specifically to decide and plan for weekly physical activity and by having members on the ground plan for the activities also allows for a better match of existing needs.
Identifying the right purposeful team to drive this initiative is also important because some might regard this as “extra work”. However if this is a top-down approach which cuts across the different departments, it will be well received.
5. Immerse Yourself in the Outdoors
Get out of the office!
Go for a hike, a run (or cycle) in the park, sit on the open grass patch to stretch.
These can be done on a Saturday morning, or even leaving the office two hours earlier on a weekday as a planned activity that involves the entire company.
These group activities out in nature have proven to be a huge success because employees reap the multiple benefits of movement, sunlight, connection with other colleagues, and stress relief.
I hope that these give you some idea on how you can increase Employee Engagement and elevate Employee Wellbeing with physical activity. If you’d like to find out more on how you can best roll this out for your organisation, drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll be happy to address your needs as Wellbeing Strategists and Wellness Consultants.
About the Writer
Alex’s compass is guided by the desire to help people. This is the driving force that allows him to focus on helping organisations harness fitness, health and wellness as the vehicles to building sustainable solutions. He is the CEO and Co-founder at Actxa Wellness, where he also leads as Chief Wellbeing Strategist. Together with the team, they provide products and services as Wellness Consultants for organisations, where they identify gaps and work with HR professionals to co-create corporate wellness solutions to improve employee engagement and wellbeing.