Benefits of Workplace Gyms and Employee Wellness Programs
Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by PSECU, a Pennsylvania-based credit union.
If you're in upper management or are a business owner, you may wish to consider instituting a workplace gym or employee wellness program. Job seekers demand such benefits, as they know being able to work out while at the office keeps them more productive overall. Employees who weight train together tend to collaborate better as well!
Why make wellness a part of the workplace? Americans today spend more hours at the office than previous generations, and this has created an epidemic of stress — costing the economy billions annually. Read on to discover more about how wellness in the workplace can help you draw and retain the best talent and take your team to new heights.
1. Increased Teamwork on the Clock
Have you ever gone to a gym and observed buddies and small groups working out together? What do they do? Do they rag each other down, or are they encouraging: "C'mon. Two more. You can do it!"
Workplace gyms and wellness programs allow employees to get together outside of the office in a positive environment, not a boozy bar. They promote positive characteristicssuch as teamwork. When you're responsible for your colleague's life when they're bench pressing 200 pounds, it fosters a strong bond.
2. Fewer Days Lost Calling in Sick
Employee wellness programs foster healthier behaviors, from what people choose to eat to how they move their bodies through the world. Exercise helps people lose weight and boost their self-esteem. It also results in getting sick less often, meaning fewer lost workdays draining the economy — and the company's bottom line.
Another benefit of employee wellness programs is they help staff members manage stress. Nearly 77 percent of Americans experience physical symptomsfrom chronic stress, which results in lowered productivity and more sick days taken. Helping employees manage stress allows them to get more done.
3. Attract Top Performers to Your Team
Today's top talent expects certain amenities in their workplaces, and gyms make the list of most desired benefits. With the amount of time the most successful spend at work, they know they need to budget their time to keep their productivity at its peak. This may mean being able to walk down the hall, work the heavy bag or skip rope to get the blood flowing to generate new ideas and relieve frustration.
Workplaces that invest in gyms can reap substantial tax benefits, so much of the initial expenditure for completion can be recuperated quickly. More importantly, though, by drawing top performers, you'll raise more revenue overall. Over one-third of all employees list a free gymmembership or an on-site facility as a desired perk.
4. Improved Productivity While in the Office
Healthy employees do their best work. Fit employees are more alert since their circulatory systems work better, bringing oxygen-rich blood to their brains. Additionally, a protein known as BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor) is proven to increase cognitive function, and exercise increases levels of this protein.
5. Greater Job Satisfaction Overall
Exercise releases endorphins, naturally produced chemicals in the body that lead to feelings of elation. It also helps people break through a negative thought cycleand return to a neutral, if not positive, frame of mind. Depression drains energy, but regular exercise increases it and can act as a natural antidepressant.
Also, those with gyms on-site report higher levels of job satisfaction overall. Those who love their work tend to stay loyal to their employer. Considering the high cost of training a new employee, which can come to as much as six months of the previous employees' salary, it's well worth investing in wellness programs.
Corporate Wellness and at-Work Gyms Make Solid Business Sense
The reason many top managers give for passing on installing a gym at the office is the cost. However, investing in corporate wellness creates a stronger revenue stream through healthier, happier employees. Your staff is your greatest company asset — keeping them healthy makes solid business sense.