A Healthy, Happy, and Successful Workforce Doesn't Have to be a Pipe Dream
Make healthy snacks and meals a fixture throughout the office
: Not only to combat the perils of desk life, but to encourage wellness that can have benefits outside the office, too.
: workplace competitions that don’t rely on quotas, like Fitbit steps challenges, and in-office options, like midday yoga or even a push-up break, are a good way to break up the work day and remind employees that their health is a priority.
Make people comfortable
- and not just to keep them in office longer: If you can afford nap pods, great! Maybe a standing desk is a better place to start. Whatever it is, comfortable employees are productive employees.
Lead by example:
All the holistic health initiatives in the world aren’t going to work if management doesn’t lead by example. Those unlimited vacation days at Reddit? Only useful because managers at Reddit actively encourage their employees to use their vacation days as needed to unwind.
That’s why Brooklyn-based Etsy has developed such a robust program of continued education. Though they run the risk of educating their employees so much, they look like those cartoon hams with lines of deliciousness wafting off them to other companies’ HR departments, Etsy has found that by making education a core part of their work mission, employees have been retained at the company for far longer.
Utilize your resources to cross-train employees.
Not only will it help teams simplify their own processes as they teach fellow employees from different departments and make for more well-rounded employees; cross-training helps increase engagement - what Mayo referred to as “the human instinct of association” - between employees and the company. When you know what your company is all about, it’s hard not to stand by it.
Outsource where you can.
There’s no shame in admitting that Skillshare can teach your peers Photoshop far better than you ever could! If resources are limited, or employees are looking for a broader depth of curriculum, programs like Skillshare or even the no-cost Khan Academy tutorials are a great way to introduce in-office education without devising a curriculum and lesson plan.
Mentor, mentor, mentor.
Mayo was truly onto something when it came to human association, because no matter what the media tries to sell you about millennials not valuing older generations, mentorship is one of the most important educational benefits an employee at any level can receive. Rethink how your mentorship works - maybe a reverse-mentorship is a good way to impart cutting edge social media knowledge, while flipping that mentorship back to a more traditional place can provide tech-loving millennials with workplace skills that only come from being further along into one’s career.
Keep meetings small.
Just like you should be declining extraneous meeting invites, you shouldn’t be inviting extraneous guests - while increasingly transparent (a good thing!), it exponentially increases the potential for tangential conversation, lack of focus, and talking over others (not so good things).
Budget your time.
If your company wouldn’t consider spending money without first putting a budget in place, look at your time the same way. A 40 hour work week should not have 16 hours of meetings - and it stands to reason that if the companies with executives spending two days per week in meetings had evaluated their time by hours, rather than juggling blocks, they’d have felt the same way, too.
Migrate the medium.
Stand-up meetings are a great way to keep people focused (and get blood moving at the same time). Much like StandDesks help increase productivity because users are less apt to slouch out at a chair and stop focusing, standing meetings can do the same. In addition to health benefits, they shake up the drudgery of constantly being in a conference room, require attendees to make points more succinctly, and often last for a far shorter time while accomplishing the same amount of work.