5 WAYS TO EXPAND WELLNESS SUPPORT
There’s been more awareness this year on employee wellness that extends beyond biometrics and physical fitness. We expect that focus to be ongoing in 2021, as employees continue adapting to the ways business and life have changed due to the pandemic.
Many of the wellness topics below are programs you probably already offer, or have the ability to offer, through your benefits vendors. But employees who may not have been interested or in need of this type of support a year ago are now experiencing new stressors as well as a shift in priorities — to include a more holistic view of what well-being means for them.
In times of uncertainty, there’s a natural inclination to crave more financial stability. Whether employees are close to retirement or just beginning their careers, it’s a good time to promote any financial workshops or one-on-one sessions offered by the company managing your retirement savings program, or EAP programs that provide help with budgeting or debt reduction.
These extended months of living and working together 24/7 have been challenging for some couples. Throw in the increased parenting responsibilities for those with children attending online classes instead of going to school, and you’ve got some major new stressors that can create the need to renegotiate some roles. If your EAP offers relationship counseling, remind employees that it’s available to them.
Kids are dealing with a lot right now, like the changes in their academic lives, reduction of their extracurricular activities and possibly with the ongoing news of the coronavirus and social unrest. Plus, kids go through challenging phases even when there’s no global pandemic going on. In addition to any EAP support, your company may also have a working parent ERG or other support groups.
Employees who live alone and are working from home may be suffering from loneliness and isolation. Support their need for connection with employee groups and online communities (maybe on Teams or Yammer), coach managers to build in time for social conversation in meetings and look for ways to help single employees engage — as in mentor programs, volunteer efforts or online meetups.
Employees may have a new interest right now in developing a yoga practice, learning to meditate or trying new relaxation techniques. If you don’t have a wellness vendor that offers those sorts of programs, look for other ways to provide centering activities. Perhaps you could offer pre-recorded webinars they could access from the intranet, or online classes led by an instructor on Teams or Zoom.
HOW CAN WE HELP?
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