Everyone’s talking about workplace wellbeing, but a beanbag and free fruit might not be enough to retain top talent in the long run. The workplace wellbeing we’re talking about should continually improve your team’s physical and mental health.
By taking a holistic approach including leadership, people management and company culture, you can create a positive work environment, reduce stress and increase productivity. But there are also smaller initiatives that can be implemented to encourage wellness on a day to day basis. There’s a plethora of workplace wellbeing information out there, but here are 5 new ways to improve workplace wellbeing that you might not have discovered yet.
1. Start the day standing up
Wherever people work, they deserve to work well. Sitting for prolonged periods has been shown to slow metabolism, decrease productivity and lower mood, which is why it’s important that people move their body throughout the day. Height adjustable desks encourage gentle movement as and when you need it.
Are you the last person to leave the office? Try leaving your team’s sit-stand desk in the up position ready for the morning. Rather than slithering into the chair and hunching their backs first thing, your team will start the day upright.
2. Morning scrums aren’t just for rugby
The workplace industry has adopted the scrum philosophy as a rugby scrum is the epitome of teamwork and connection. In it you can discuss the team’s goals and project updates which will help connect and engage people before they start their tasks.
Try a 15 minute stand up meeting or ‘’SCRUM’’ in the morning with your team, (they will be standing anyway as your desks are up from last night). Engaging your people in an Agile Scrum Methodology is a refreshing and alternative way to start the day bringing with it team cohesion and clear communication.
3. Reduce overall sitting time
On average we spend 9 hours a day sitting! In 2018, the NHS updated its 2011 findings and re-published its Physical Activities guidelines concluding, ‘’Sitting for long periods of time has been linked to lowering metabolism, which affects the body’s ability to regulate blood sugar, blood pressure, and break down body fat’’. We can feel sluggish after we’ve eaten, so one way to make your mind feel more alert and focused is to stand for the first 30 minutes after your meal.
4. Provide health accessories
Everyone knows what it feels like to get neck strain from looking down too much, an aching wrist from poor mouse positioning, or pins and needles in your legs from not moving your feet; all signs of a worker who’s not moved their body for several hours. Ergonomic equipment such as lumbar support, arm rests, foot rockers, wobble stools, under desk bikes and balance boards help increase circulation and ensure your body is getting blood to all the right places. This means that typically sedentary positions become less sedentary.
Speak to the team: what resources would improve their physical health throughout the week? Everyone’s needs are different and we all have varying start points in our health journey. Individualising each person’s workstation with ergonomic tools can have a positive impact on their workplace wellbeing both physically and mentally.
5. Activate good habits through visual reminders
Conscious breathing, meditation, mindfulness – regardless of which one aligns with you more, they are all known to reduce anxiety. We’ve all heard the saying “Take a deep breath’, but do you know why? Deep breathing increases the oxygen sent to your brain which in turn stimulates your parasympathetic nervous system and thus creates feelings of calm.
Remind people to take a break with visual cues. Print off small leaflets that workers can have on their desks offering simple advice about things like breathing techniques, mindfulness, journalling and simple stretching that can be done from the desk. HeadSpace offers great resources on learning to reduce anxiety and stressors here.
Successful companies don’t sit still. When you delve into it further, part of that success comes down to always looking for new ways to improve workplace wellbeing.
If you’re looking to invest in your people, reduce risk, and increase profitability, then get in touch to discover how height adjustable desks use expert ergonomics and clever technology to encourage movement throughout the day.