Written by Pete Morano on August 14, 2013
Categories: Blog Posts

Ourdoor MeetingCompany culture is a powerful force that can help you recruit top talent, improve your employees’ job satisfaction, keep productivity high and turnover rates low.

Crafting a healthy work environment is an extremely important investment for businesses. Your team needs to be performing at their best, and giving them ways to relieve some stress, get a little exercise and feel great during the workday will make them happier and more productive — not to mention that they’ll appreciate you looking out for their well-being.

Here are a few ways that you can ensure that you’re building a healthy (and fun!) environment for your employees:

Encourage Breaks

Many companies inadvertently reward employees that smoke by allowing them to take breaks and go outside throughout the day. It’s important to encourage all employees to take regular breaks to help them decompress and better manage the endless stream of tasks that come up. If you have a walking trail near the office, let them go outside to clear their heads. If there’s a basketball court across the street, let them play a quick game. Stepping away from a difficult problem or project for a few minutes can bring much-needed clarity and improve productivity overall.

Make It Easy

Several of Momentum’s employees ride their bikes to and from work. It’s essential to offer things like bike storage to those who choose to commute via bike. Biking to the office has a number of environmental and health benefits, including reducing carbon emissions and getting the recommended 30 minutes of exercise a day, so it’s great to encourage this practice whenever possible. You can also help your employees make better choices by providing healthy snacks and a space to decompress when they need it.

cyclocross team

Foster Healthy Competition

Right now, the Momentum team is in the middle of a Healthy Workforce Challenge. Each week, we have a different activity to complete: Eating 5 servings of fruit and/or veggies every day, exercising 30 minutes a day, bringing a healthy lunch to work and drinking 32 ounces of water every day. Our employees are keeping track of their points, and the winner will get to pick out a brand new pair of running shoes. The challenge has been a great way to make healthier lifestyle choices together, and we’ve been sharing some great healthy recipes with each other every week. 

Organize Group Activities

Our team is great about organizing some fun ways to hang out together — even outside of work. Earlier this year, a team from Momentum competed in a local Amazing Race fundraiser to raise money for the Lakeshore Foundation, and a few weekends ago we met up to run a 5k near the office. The Chair of our Board of Directors even joined in and ran with us! Whether it’s rock climbing, kayaking, trying a new restaurant or going to a baseball game, there are always activities you can help organize to give employees the space to do the things they love — together.

Baseball Game

Create a Healthy Workspace

Embrace the power of plants and natural light. Research shows that indoor plants can can help reduce stress, and natural light can help keep employees productive and keep their regulatory processes running smoothly. If you don’t have windows, consider holding quick meetings outside to let your team get some much-needed Vitamin D. You can also look into providing some standing desks for employees that want them. Recent studies have shown that sitting at a computer all day can have some serious effects on long-term and short-term health. Stand-up desks can help workers feel more energetic and alleviate back problems. 

What is your company doing to create a unique (and healthy) company culture? What are your favorite perks at your job? Share in the comments section below.