|Something as simple as a Post It may be the nudge one needs |
to get moving....you never know.
Last night I had the pleasure of speaking at an AGM of non-profit agencies within my city. The talk went well, I got a few laughs (always my goal) and I met some really cool people. After the talk, I was asked if I could provide a few suggestions for a workplace health promotion program that may motivate employees to make "healthier" lifestyle choices (without spending much money). It is so great to meet leaders who truly care about their staff. I then offered a few hints and suggestions that wouldn't cost much and may have a positive influence on employees. In addition to that, I promised I would blog about it...so here it is.
|This is one of the coolest pictures I have seen advertising health promotion. Although, I have to admit, I'm getting sick of the rock stack thing....what the hell does it mean anyway?|
There are many conflicting opinions on whether a health campaigns actually influence behaviour, however, you never can tell when someone is ready to make a change. The poster or information you put up may be the kicker to get them up and walking (so to speak). A cheap and easy way to promote health is to simply place "factoids" and other posters up around the workplace. "Did you know?" boards with interesting (not the same old messages of eating well and exercising) facts about exercise or diet may also help. For example, did you know that if you were to stop drinking that one can of Coke a day (sugared) you could lose up to 10 pounds within one year? Did you know that lack of sleep is linked to overweight and obesity? Use humour, make it funny, and they will pay attention.
|This is a great example of using a|
bit of imagination to market
the idea of health.
Perhaps you start a walking program just around your workplace to start. Chart it, gather names, use gold stars (like we did when we were in Kindergarten)...this stuff works. I used "the star" program myself when I taught an early morning spin class for three whole years. Every morning I would ask each member to place a star next to their name (participants signed up for this system at the start of the classes). We got so organized that if they had to travel and did a spin class outside of mine, they would come with a note from the instructor to say they got their gold star. Once so many stars were accumulated, we would gather at someone's house, have a potluck, and celebrate our fabulousness. It was powerful stuff. I had approximately a 80% retention rate over three years (when the average is 60%).
My final suggest takes it a bit further to suggest that you schedule a monthly "health promotion" event that most can attend. Find a volunteer health and fitness professional to speak about certain topics. These people are super easy to find and are completely eager to share their knowledge in exchange for some publicity. By calling your local fitness center, for example, asking for names of certified fitness specialists, nutritionists, yoga instructors, and other health promotion professionals you will be surprised what you can create.
With a little attention and effort, anyone can create a health promotion program within their workplace for little to no money. After saying this (and realizing that this is what I do for a living and would like to have your business) to create a long term health promotion program based upon sound, safe, and current research that will take into account behavioural psychology (lifestyle changes) is a little more detailed and complex. For those with the budget in place, I high recommend hiring a consultant or facilitator...just like me (please excuse my exploitation of this opportunity....but I'm very good at what I do...if I do say so myself).
If you are interested in learning more about what you, the leader, can do to promote a healthy workplace I recommend "googling" this topic and scrolling through the links yourself. I do this regularly just to pick up an idea or two when I'm feeling a little less inspired.
I hope this post has given you a few ideas to try out. If you would like more information on what you can do on a dime, please do not hesistate to comment below and I will answer promptly. OR email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to hear from you.
That's all I got!