By Joletta Pekari, Director of Human Resources and Employee Engagement, Axea Solutions
Professional and Employee Wellness Month is celebrated every year in the month of June, focusing on the importance of personal well-being and health in the workplace. Even more important, it brings light to the employer's role in promoting wellness and creating a healthy work environment.
At Axea Solutions, we believe our employees are unquestionably one of our most valuable assets. Our employees directly affect the quality of our work and the service provided to clients. People are one of the primary determinants of the success of any organization and often can be the most significant differentiator. This is why employee health and wellness is a core component of our corporate culture.
From my years of experience in Human Resources, working closely with the people within the organization, when your team is healthy, more balanced, and happier, they tend to be more productive. Further, people with a healthy, balanced work environment tend to be happier in their job and ultimately more likely to stay with their companies. Axea is proud to have above-average tenured team members, and I genuinely believe that's due partly to our focus on creating a positive, healthy work environment. But, creating this type of balance of wellness in the workplace can be tricky, even more so in the virtual environment many organizations operate in today.
We view professional and employee wellness as a year-round initiative. For example, Axea implemented Corporate Movement and Mindfulness Sessions, where we offer virtual, guided health and wellness sessions for employees. Led by certified yoga and fitness instructor Lauren Reese, the guided sessions provide our employees with a range of activities from gentle movement, stretching, and breathing exercises, to various focus and meditation techniques. This initiative aims to provide a holistic approach to flexibility and health, and our team members love it! Studies show that stretching and meditation help reduce stress levels and promote creativity. We've found this successful in revitalizing our staff, and it's also proven to be a great team-building experience!
Axea's approach to creating a healthy work environment for employees starts with encouraging the practice of self-care and providing tools and resources to explore ways to improve our valued team members' physical, mental, and emotional well-being. And we practice what we preach! Susan Gatehouse, Axea’s Founder and CEO has long advocated for health and wellness in the workplace. Susan herself has completed her certification as a Yoga Instructor, The Roll Model Method ™, and is currently working on an additional certification in Grounded Kids Yoga.
Another way Axea promotes employee wellness year-round is by recognizing and rewarding employees throughout the year for hitting physical fitness milestones through a wellness and rewards program called Go365®. Similar to our Corporate Movement and Mindfulness Sessions, this has also served as an excellent team-building experience as employees can create different challenges and invite others to join!
The Go365®program, part of Axea's employee health plan, rewards healthy behaviors, provides group fitness challenges, and shares various wellness activities to encourage more movement and healthy habits. All employees need to participate in the Go365® Program is a device to track their data, such as a smartphone, Apple Watch or Fitbit. Accessible through a mobile app, Go365® gives employees the opportunity to join step challenges, weight loss challenges, and numerous private challenges to earn financial rewards that can be used for multiple brands and retailers. In recognition of Employee Wellness Month, the Go365® program launched a sponsored Body in a Motion step challenge to further encourage team health and boost employee rewards.
The key to having a successful wellness program at work is encouraging overall wellness while still keeping it fun. The goal is to engage team members, so be sure to make your initiatives fun, experiment with different ideas and see what your team values the most. Doing some simple physical activity every so often can increase wellness and raise your team's productivity. Encourage 10-minute breaks to get up, move around, grab water, and regenerate!
Employee wellness is all about ensuring your workforce is healthy and happy. Companies will always benefit when they take their wellness seriously. If your company doesn't already have an employee wellness program, I would encourage you to take the time to look into one!
Employee wellness is invaluable for strengthening our business, and we greatly encourage healthy habits, including rest and rejuvenation. When we focus on the wellness and health of employees, Axea as a whole becomes stronger, and our quest for high employee happiness can be achieved across the board!
How we view it, is that our employees work hard to take care of our clients, and it's our responsibility to work just as hard to create a healthy work environment and do what we can to help take care of our employees' well-being! Axea's wellness initiatives aim not only to promote health and wellness but also to provide a positive, happy work environment — where the result is better overall health and happier employees!
Joletta is a Human Resource professional and employee advocate with over two decades of experience in HR and Operations. Joletta champions Axea Solution's corporate culture by working tirelessly to attract and retain the best people, maintain the highest quality standards, and provide Axea Solutions employees with a consistent, positive work environment.
Employee Wellness Resources
Corporate Movement and Mindfulness Sessions
Lauren Reese, Certified Yoga and Fitness Coach, co-owner of MOVE+breathe Studio
Movement and Meditation Session <Video LINK>
Breathing and Meditation Techniques <Video LINK>
CDC - Physical Activity Breaks for the Workplace Resource Guide: