As an employer of first responders, you are likely dependent on the work that is completed by your employees to make money. That being said, the work that your employees complete is essential to the survival of your organization. Because of this, it is essential that you know your employees are feeling well and working to the best of their abilities, without the hindrance of sickness or other common ailments.
How can you ensure that your first responders stay healthy and happy? It is actually quite simple – make a health and wellness program for your employees to ensure that they stay healthy. A wellness program is a health initiative that you as an employer can design to improve the overall employee health by focusing on topics like exercise, weight loss, health education courses, tobacco-cessation, and benchmark health screenings. All of these activities and more can be used as a way to increase employee productivity and decrease the number of sick days logged, both ways that will increase the quality of work completed while simultaneously decreasing company operating costs.
At Peer Support Central, we openly advocate for the implementation of health and wellness programs because we understand the substantial impact that they have on both organizations and their employees. We offer a multitude of peer support training and development courses, including a seminar on building a wellness program for your organization. Come join us for a half-day workshop where we can discuss how to design a health and wellness plan for your employees.
Today, we will be discussing why it is important to build a wellness program for your organization.
Why Are Wellness Programs Important?
To answer this question, we first have to address that wellness is important. When an individual does not feel well, they cannot perform tasks to the best of their ability, hurting both the individual and the organization. So obviously promoting wellness is the main motivation for implementing a wellness program, but what else can a program do for your organization?
Building Community Among Employees
As an organization of first responders, it is likely that you already have a sense of community among your employees, as they most likely spend a lot of time together, but a wellness program can take the community strength to a new level.
While they may have grown close from countless hours on the job together, they were still working, and work is naturally going to inhibit some of the conversations that your employees might have when they aren’t in the field. A health and wellness program can bridge this gap, as the employees will still be participating in group activities together, but without the added pressures of being on the job.
So not only does a wellness program promote overall health and activity of employees, but it also generates relationships that first responders just don’t have the time to build while in the field or on the clock.
Lower Healthcare Costs
The second benefit of a wellness program goes hand-in-hand with increased overall health. When members of your organization participate in a health initiative, they will naturally become healthier, lowering their healthcare costs over time. “How?” you may ask? Well, when someone becomes healthier, they most likely will no longer need, or not need as much, treatment for the common ailments that they were previously facing. This means less pain medication, less medicine, and fewer visits to the doctor.
With an organization-wide wellness program, saving first responder’s healthcare money is the name of the game.
In traditional wellness programs, it is not uncommon for organizations to spice up the idea of getting healthy with a little bit of friendly competition. Now it is entirely up to your organization to pick what challenges or competitions to hold or participate in, so holding a vote among your staff might make for a more engaging challenge.
Some examples of friendly challenges that you might be interested in including in your wellness program are who can run the most amount of miles in a month, who can lose the most weight, who can log the most consecutive nights with 8 hours of sleep, or who can cut junk food or alcohol out of their diet for the longest.
Wellness program challenges don’t have to be extreme, they just have to be engaging, and by participating in them the winner may feel a sense of accomplishment when they achieve more than their peers.
A large and often overlooked factor that contributes to overall health is stress, for first responders especially. For a first responder, high-stress situations are not uncommon, but it is the stress that sticks around that needs to be addressed. With a wellness program, stress can be addressed in many ways, whether that be from hosting a physical class to get everyone’s blood moving, or a mental health seminar where employees can learn tactics to combat stress in their daily lives.
Once stress has been addressed, it will be easier for employees of your organization to focus on winning the office health challenges.
Increased Productivity For Your Organization
Eating well and exercising is one of the easiest ways to improve alertness and productivity, so when you get your whole, or a majority of, your organization to participate in a wellness program productivity will increase exponentially. Not only can you see an increase in productivity, but you can also see an increase in happiness, as your employees will get more done and enjoy themselves while they do so.
So Why Should You Attend Our Wellness Program Workshop?
If your first responder organization is good, then a health and wellness program will make it great. Not only will the organization see a drastic increase in productivity, but it will also see an overall boost in employee health and happiness.
Here at Peer Support Central we fully support wellness initiatives for both the sake of the organizations and the employees that take part in them, but there is more than you can do to make your organization stronger. Our peer support training and development courses are great for military training, corporate training, first responder training, and leadership training opportunities that will make your organization stronger and more prepared for whatever the world could throw at it.
If you are interested in bettering both your organization and your employees, be sure to contact us today and sign up for a first responder wellness program workshop or one of our various other beneficial courses.
Contact us today if you have any questions about our various training and development courses. And let us help you create a happy and healthy workplace.