Page 9 - Scene Magazine 42-07 July 2017
P. 9

Organizations that implement formal, or informal, workplace health and wellbeing programs are known to have:
• Increased employee morale and engagement.
• Increased employee engagement.
• Increased team cohesiveness.
• Improved health knowledge.
• Reduced workplace injuries and associated expenses.
• Increased attraction and retention of employees.
• Reduced sick leave and absenteeism.
In short, a healthy workplace
is good for business.
“Businesses are in and of the com- munity,” said Koh. “If you take care of your employees, if you are careful about the health impact of your consumer products, if you try to be stewards
for your environment, and you try to advocate on behalf of your community, that should be good for your business. A theme that we heard at this confer- ence was that this should be how all businesses are run. That’s the hope and dream.”
The conference was co-sponsored by Harvard Chan, HBS, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in April at HBS. Their aim was to set a new re- search agenda around promoting health as a corporate value. The conference led to many discussion that seem to make it clear that there is an eagerness to do more on many levels. A commit- ment was made to use this conference as a launching pad to learn more and to do more.
“Good Health is Good Business” is a program recently launched by the Tri City Regional Chamber of Commerce in Kennewick, Washington.
They have invited their community to join with others on an eight-week chal- lenge to improve health while engaging in a fun, friendly competition. Partici- pants could compete individually, with
a team, or both. Their tasks included tracking activity minutes, nutrition, and wellness accomplishments through an online portal system daily.
The Good Health is Business Program began in 2012 as a compre- hensive health and wellness program coordinated by the Tri-City Regional Chamber of Commerce with other community partners to help educate the community and create individual and business awareness and participation.
It is still going strong with two eight- week challenge periods, one in the spring and one in the fall.
The result: A fun and inspirational way for employees to get healthy and make positive choices to change their lives and improve the company’s bottom line!
Is it all starting to sound a bit familiar?
Calhoun County developed a weight loss challenge here in our community
in 2011 tailored after another area that started out to lose a few pounds. Col- lective pounds were shed, but the focus was really on the individual rather than on the camaraderie that develops with peers in the working environment.
The Corporate Cup put on by the
Y Center has been a successful and long-standing program focused on health that is based on a team concept.
While it does make it more challenging for small businesses to participate, there are ways to join with others to create a team that can compete. In either case, the team building that occurs from par- ticipating has lasting affects on all the areas previously identified.
Other programs have developed organically that are designed for
the individual but can also impact
the workplace. Whether it’s a team approach to weight loss, strength training, flexibility, endurance, nutrition, team walking or running, or possibly yoga or meditation, working together to achieve health seems to make it easier. Rewards or even a little healthy competition can add the incentive that some need.
Putting employee health and well- being at the forefront of your agenda
is one of the smartest moves you can make for your business. You can imple- ment a successful health and wellbeing program whether your workplace is large or small.
What can we as a small business do to help impact the health of our com- munity? We have worked hard to give of our time and talents to help where we can. The more each business, each person, helps... the healthier we all become.

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