So where do you start?
Go right back to basics. You can’t expect great results if you’re using the wrong fuel. Treat your body with respect and give it great healthy, unprocessed, low sugar foods and drinks and see how your energy and mood improves in just two days!
One very quick and simple thing you can do is replace unhealthy snacks with your own take-to-work DIY smoothie. It tastes great so you don’t feel you’re missing out on sweet treats. This one is a great balanced smoothie containing each of the macro nutrition groups (carbohydrate, protein, fat):
Blend: 2 handfuls spinach/kale, ½ cup rolled oats, 1 piece fruit, 2 cups water/milk/coconut water, 1 tbsp flaxseed/handful nuts
How about a weekly smoothie competition – replacing the office bake-off! Encourage others to follow your lead. There are some other great energy boosting ideas in our Improving Energy & Concentration lunchtime seminar. If you don’t have time for this, perhaps get your staff involved in some Elearning.
Using wellbeing to get promoted
If you get healthier you’ll get noticed, and you’ll inspire others. Isn’t that a great leadership quality – inspiring others?
Here’s some great information to help communicate how important it is to focus on Nutrition and wellbeing to help you and your colleagues get one step ahead in being healthier, happier and optimising performance.
The facts are simple; people work best and perform better when they are healthy, well and engaged. Studies looking at relationship between business performance and wellbeing identify performance increases when employees are satisfied at work (Bryson et al 2014).
“The biggest asset your organisation has is its people: the biggest asset they have is their health and wellbeing – so it makes good business sense to look after it.” Investors In People
Are you on trend?
Over the last couple of years employee health and wellbeing has become the new must have. It used to be niche and certainly not a strategic priority for most businesses. The PricewaterhouseCoopers Wellness Report (2008) led many organisations to implement wellness programmes after noticing: an increasing age of the workforce, rising costs of chronic disease and ill-health, external pressures from Government, corporate and social responsibility, and competition. They identified the greatest financial benefits of implementing wellness plans came from cost savings – including 45% reduction in sickness absence, and 18% reduction in staff turnover.
What is your organisation doing to encourage wellbeing?
Could you or someone in your HR department help take the lead? The 2015 CIPD Absence Management survey identified only 29% of employers had a formal wellbeing strategy or plan in place. 25% didn’t have a formal strategy or plan, but did have wellbeing initiatives, 37% acted flexibly on an ad hoc basis, and 9% said they were not currently doing anything to support employee health and wellbeing.
Why should HR get involved?
HR professionals are increasingly finding promoting healthy and productive working environments as part of their roles. This management of employee wellbeing has become a central activity for any high performing organisation (British Psychological Society 2010). However HR professionals are stretched between meeting the needs of a multigenerational workforce and rising healthcare costs. HUB International (2016) study found 83% of small and medium organisations ranked employee wellness and productivity as a key focal area, confirmed by a return on investment particularly in terms of employee productivity and morale.
Here’s some evidence to help boost your business case
Good levels of health and well-being have a positive effect on an organisation’s productivity and profitability through employees being healthier, happier, more present and more engaged in the workplace (Black 2008).
Investors in People Wellbeing at Work Survey (2014) found 80% employees would feel more positive towards their employer if they offered better health & wellbeing benefits. Happy healthy employees are more likely to be present, motivated and productive. They are more likely to be flexible and commit to change – a vital requirement.
In 2014/5 23.3 million days were lost due to work related ill health, on average each person took off around 19 days for ill health. Stress, depression or anxiety accounted for majority of days lost. The average days lost for stress, depression or anxiety was 23 days (Health & Safety Executive). Many organisations have used our Improving Resilience 45 minute seminar for stress management tips.
The vital role of Nutrition
Britain ranks worst in Europe for obesity (Department of Health 2010). We eat at least a third of our daily calorie intake at work, which of course is going to have an impact on how effective we are at work.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) identified companies who employ 1,000 people lost more than £126,000 a year in lost productivity due to obesity. An exciting study is underway with the Institute of Grocery Distribution and Cambridge University looking into the most effective interventions to assist employees in making healthier food and drink choices at work. Keep an eye on our blogs for study updates.
Merrill (2013) identified employees who eat healthy all day long were 25% more likely to have higher job performance. Employees who ate five + servings of fruit and vegetables at least four times a week were 20% more likely to be more productive. Overall, absenteeism was 27% lower for those workers who ate healthy and exercised regularly, and job performance was 11%higher than their peers who were obese.
Tools to help with your wellbeing business case
If you’d like to promote a healthier working environment where performance and wellbeing can be optimised, you could use the Workplace Wellbeing Tool which offers organisation specific advice on proving the business case for workplace wellbeing, starting with identifying the organisation’s costs of poor health and wellbeing through sickness absence, presenteeism, injury and ill health. The tool then helps estimate the costs and benefits of an organisation investing in a well-being programme, producing a business case for action. The tool calculates payback period and the benefit to-cost ratio, as well as the net present value and the internal rate of return. (DWP 2013)
Follow this link if you would like to find out how we work with organsiations to improve their wellbeing and productivity.
BRYSON, A., FORTH, J. and STOKES, L. (2014) Does worker well-being affect workplace performance? London: Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.
PricewaterhouseCoopers; Building the case for wellness 2008 https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/209547/hwwb-dwp-wellness-report-public.pdf
BRITISH PSYCHOLOGICAL SOCIETY. (2010) Working group on health and well-being in the workplace: White paper – psychological well-being at work. No REP94/11.2010. Leicester: British Psychological Society.
HUB International (2016) Survey: Small employers rate wellness highly, but they worry about costs http://www.hubinternational.com/uploadedfiles/corporate/products/employee_benefits_-_new_templates/forms/employee%20benefits%20barometer.pdf
BLACK, C. (2008) Working for a healthier tomorrow: Dame Carol Black’s review of the health of Britain’s working age population. London: Department for Work and Pensions. Available at: https:// www.gov.uk/government/uploads/ system/uploads/attachment_data/ file/209782/hwwb-working-for-ahealthier-tomorrow.pdf.
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH. (2010) Healthy lives, healthy people: our strategy for public health in England [online]. Cm 7985. London: The Stationery Office. Available at: https://www.gov. uk/government/uploads/system/ uploads/attachment_data/ file/216096/dh_127424.pdf
NHS choices, 2015, Workplace Overview, www.nhs.uk/Livewell/workplacehealth/Pages/workplaceoverview.aspx/a>
National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, 2015, Workplace health: management practices www.nice.org.uk/guidance/NG13
Institute of Grocery Distribution http://www.igd.com/Initiatives/Healthy-Eating-programme/Healthy-eating-in-the-workplace/
Merrill, RM et al (2013) Self-rated job performance and absenteeism according to employee engagement, health behaviors, and physical health. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine. 55(1):10-18, January 2013
Workplace Wellbeing Tool https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/workplace-wellbeing-tool