How to Create Wellness Spaces at WorkReading Time: 4 minutes
A healthy workplace is a productive workplace. More companies realize that an improved work environment has many benefits for everyone within the office. Happy employees tend to stay with the company longer. Creating wellness spaces at work is a newer trend bringing positive results.
Wellness spaces can be complete rooms or smaller spots within the office that offer focused health benefits. These spaces provide a place to wind down between meetings and have a significant impact on the health and wellness of an employee. That translates to employees using fewer sick days. Here are some tips on how to create wellness spaces at work.
Offer A Mix of Environments
Cubicles can sometimes stifle creativity and make employees feel trapped in a box. But not every worker enjoys an open work environment. The pendulum has swung hard over the past two decades from cubicle farms to open-plan workspaces. Offering a mix of different work environments allows employees to choose which layout works for them. If they want to work collaboratively at a group desk, they can, but they can also select a closed-off room as well.
You can still create a come-and-go style of work that keeps workers from camping out in one area. Allowing your extroverted workers to sit with others all day and your introverted workers to sit alone is helpful. Some may choose both depending on the day and what kind of projects they’re working on. A mix of desk formations is also essential as many employees like a sit-stand desk option that can convert to their needs throughout the day.
Create a Wellness Room
It’s crucial to have a few areas in the office where work isn’t allowed. These are wellness rooms and can include comfortable seating, quiet surroundings, and even the chance to take a catnap. Some wellness rooms offer yoga or access to a treadmill to burn off some stress. A wellness room should help counteract physical and mental stress. Some wellness rooms can be just large enough for a single person, while others can have seating for a larger group.
Add Natural Light and Plants
There’s a reason everyone wants an office with a window. Natural light combined with plant life creates a peaceful work environment. Lose the curtains or any heavy furniture that blocks the natural light in the office. Add special light bulbs that mimic daylight or install skylights in darker parts of the office.
Add potted plants throughout the office, that employees can both see and touch. Not only do plants help add color and shape to the room, but they also can help purify the air. Place smaller plants, such as jade, near workspaces, and larger varieties including ficus trees in hallways and conference rooms. A touch of nature is an excellent way to create wellness spaces at work.
Keep the office at a temperature everyone is comfortable with. If you see people donning sweaters and jackets, turn the thermostat up a few degrees. It’s tough to please everyone, so offer small fans and space heaters to employees to keep at their desks.
Incorporate Healthy Food Options
Not every employee will take advantage of a fitness program, but most will benefit from free food or snacks in the office. This could be something as simple as fresh fruit in a bowl that’s easy to access. Having pre-cut fruit and vegetables also increases the chance employees will choose healthy snacks over processed ones.
Make sure water stations are placed throughout the office to keep everyone hydrated and healthy. Customized water solutions for employees keep hydration fun and reduces the intake of sugary drinks. Not only will hydrated employees feel better, but it could also have a positive impact on the company’s health insurance rates!
There are many things that you can do as an employer to create a better work environment. Even if your office is on the cutting edge of workplace trends, there’s always room for growth and improvement. A healthier and happier office will save you time and money.
Chen Zhan began designing office spaces when he noticed the women he worked with donning sweaters, while the men turned continually turned the temperature down. He now consults with companies around the globe to improve company performance. Sometimes it’s as simple as adding some space heaters.