Wellness. We know it is a hot topic within organizations to maintain employee satisfaction but what does it really mean? At Allocadia we wanted to concentrate on ways to ensure wellness isn’t an after thought to work, but that wellness went hand-in-hand with work.
As a growing tech company, we knew we needed to step it up a notch in the overall wellness department. Our People and Culture team sat down and thought about this big question of defining wellness. Before establishing a wellness program, it seemed logical to figure out the meaning of wellness for our company as a whole. Unfortunately for us problem solvers, that definition just didn’t come easily. What we realized is that wellness has no single definition and a uniform opinion of wellness should not be forced upon our team. In January 2019 we launched our first official wellness program at Allocadia visualized through one key concept: a wheel.
Why a wheel?
The program was designed after we received feedback to focus more on wellness. Rather than handing out gym memberships we needed a plan that was inclusive of everyone’s fitness goals and definition of overall wellness.
The design of this program puts specific areas of wellness into focus throughout the calendar year. Some of these areas include physical, mental, emotional, and environmental wellness to name a few. If you think of January as the beginning of the wheel, we come full circle by December. A wheel, or circle, has connotations of inclusion, wholeness and unity; all words that make connection to life in its various cycles. With the focus on maintaining our health and wellbeing, concentrating on the circle means you consider all areas of wellness and how they relate to each other. Add in some creative thinking as a way to connect a variety of wellness concepts into a wheel… and voila! We have our Wheel of Wellness to match the calendar year. It gives us 12 different wellness focus areas that are distinct yet aligned to a holistic view of wellness.
To launch the program, we asked employees to take a moment to self-reflect on wellness in their lives and areas they might need more focus on. That way each employee could identify their own intentions and have the choice of how much they want to participate.
We knew our People and Culture team could not build this program alone, we needed more voices and perspectives. So, we enlisted those with an interest in wellness to form a “Wellness Committee”, which is composed of individuals from various departments who have one thing on their mind, “How do we create a culture of wellness?”
Creating a culture of wellness
Wellness is an active, lifelong process of developing self-awareness and making decisions that will help you to live a more balanced and fulfilling life. Putting that concept into an office environment can be complicated, as we didn’t want to get too personal. Lucky for us one of our values in #RunHealthy so as a company we all know it is important part of being an Allocadian. As we’ve start our journey, we have created a dedicated slack channel for wellness, an interactive wellness wall in the office, and have specific events planned each month for the varying subjects of wellness, all maintained and managed by the committee.
Introducing the focus each month
To start in January, we focused on healthy heart to get us moving. We launched a weekly fitness class for employees in the office and had our first walking challenge of the year. Already having a yoga class, the fitness class has become a permanent addition. Moving into February when the bills come in from the holidays, we focused on financial wellness and had a Financial Analyst host a lunch and learn on saving options. March included healthy snack options, loads of awesome recipes posted by our team and some alternative meal options. For April, we are focusing on Emotional Wellness by doing a 30-days of gratitude challenge, an outdoor scavenger hunt, and promoting employees to do things for themselves. To supplement the events of each month, we always add books to our library related to the focus area. We’re excited to continue growing and expanding this program as we continue through the year.
Every successful program has an objective that the team can rally behind and strive for – here’s what we’re aiming to accomplish.
The Allocadia Employee Wellness Wheel Program will strive to increase the well-being and productivity of all employees by enhancing all aspects of health. The program seeks to increase awareness of positive health behaviors, to motivate employees to voluntarily adopt healthier behaviors, and to provide opportunities and a supportive environment to foster positive lifestyle changes.