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(2/3) Promoting Workplace Wellness through Stretch and Mindfulness (Corporate Yoga) Programs

Updated: 2 days ago


Illustration of employees doing yoga

The International Day of Yoga 2024 presents a fantastic opportunity for HR professionals to promote employee well-being and productivity. By implementing a workplace Stretch & Mindfulness initiative, companies can harness the benefits of yoga and improve overall workplace morale. This blog provides some suggestions / a step-by-step approach to introducing this initiative and engaging employees meaningfully.


How to implement a workplace Stretch & Mindfulness / Yoga program


Here are some points to get you started:


1. A Poll or Survey


Engaging employees from the outset ensures the initiative meets their needs and gains their initial buy-in. Conduct a survey to gather insights, preferences, and level of interest.


Here are some questions you may like to use:


  • What is the likelihood of you joining us in this initiative?

    • On a scale of 1-6

    • If less than 4, ask what initiative they want to see introduced.

  • What time of the day would you participate?

    • Before work

    • After lunch

    • After work

  • How much would you be willing to pay?

    • (Sliding scale) from $0 to $20

  • Which of these ailments do you suffer from, if any?

    • Sore back

    • Feeling tired all the time

    • Lack of flexibility

    • Headaches/Migraines

    • Other(s)

      • If others, allow a field for the user to input

  • When was the last time you took a Yoga or Stretch and Mindfulness Class?

    • In the last 7 days

    • In the last 30 days

    • in the last 6 months

    • Other(s)

      • Tell me more


2. Selecting a Provider


Like most things, choosing the right provider/partner is critical.


  • Company’s Health Insurance Provider: Ask your company's health insurance provider if they can assist here. Many health insurance providers offer wellness programs or can recommend reliable providers.

  • Local Yoga Studios: Ask local Yoga studios to provide a "6-8 week workplace yoga program" focusing on Stretch & Mindfulness. Compare their offerings and select the best fit for your needs and budget.

  • Please mention to the Yoga Studio that this is a great opportunity to promote their studio for anyone wanting to come after work.


NOTE: Ideally, the selected provider would provide you with some collateral e.g. Bio to share with your employees to create interest, credibility, and early rapport.


3. Select your Company Champion(s)


To inspire employees to get involved in these wellness initiatives, it's important for your leadership team to take the lead and get involved. This demonstrates your firm's dedication to employee wellbeing, creating a supportive work environment whilst also delivering on your internal social responsibility.


  • Have Senior Management On-board: Aim to have at least one or two Senior Managers endorse the initiative. Provide them with a business case, that would include “6-8 week Pilot or Trial” to gauge interest and any earlier feedback. You can cite the benefits mentioned in Part 1 of this blog post.

  • Talk with Your Building or Facilities Manager: If you’re leasing your premises, your building manager may have a suitable space available. In fact, the building manager may already have this type of initiative underway with other tenants. If not, this can be an excellent opportunity to collaborate and start a conversation with other HR professionals in your complex.

  • Your Facilities Manager may also provide alternative options, you just need to ask with a smile 🙂 and let them know this is for the benefit of both the employees and the firm.

  • Ask for Volunteers/Site Champions: This person may already be practicing Yoga, and like most Yogis’, would love to be the go-to person for others to connect with. This person would also help to ensure the room is ready on the day and be the site contact for the practicing instructor on the day.


4. Funding


Securing funding for the initiative can be achieved through various means.


  • Ask your health insurance provider if they would sponsor this initiative: In return, you can promote their health plan to increase membership together with raising brand awareness.

  • Seek sponsorship from other benefit providers: This can offset costs and increase participation in the provider's own offering. Let's also mention good-will.

  • Propose to your CFO that the firm could possibly fund 50% and the employees cover the other 50%: This shared cost approach is something most CFOs like to hear, providing for a Solomonic and mutually beneficial outcome.

  • You may also include sponsorship funds to the mix i.e. 30% employee contribution, 30% sponsorship, and only 40% company contribution. Whichever way you split the cost, being entrepreneurial in your approach will be refreshing to your CFO.


5. Communication


Effective communication is key to ensuring high participation rates.


  • Email: Send detailed emails explaining the benefits and logistics of the initiative.

  • Posters: Place posters around the office to generate interest and keep the initiative top of mind.

  • Booking system: Implement a simple booking system to manage session attendance and ensure a smooth experience.


6. Report and Testimonials


Tracking the program's success and sharing positive feedback can sustain momentum.


Use testimonials to demonstrate your company’s commitment to workplace health and well-being. Real-life stories from employees can encourage others to join and highlight the program's benefits.


Bonus resource


Are you curious about the powerful impact that mindfulness can have on boosting productivity and job satisfaction within your team? Watch the inspiring video below featuring David Gelles, a respected reporter from The New York Times. Learn how forward-thinking business leaders are unlocking the secrets of meditation to create a more joyful and effective work environment.


Mindful Work by David Gelles | Talks at Google



Timestamp highlights:

  • Mindfulness is spreading throughout the business world. 01:47

  • Implementing mindfulness in corporate settings 25:45

  • Creating mindfulness zones in the workplace can reduce stress and increase productivity. 29:30

  • Implementing mindfulness practices at work boosts productivity and health 31:14

  • Addressing scepticism around Mindfulness 42:49


Key takeaways

  • Conduct surveys to understand employee preferences.

  • Select a reliable provider for yoga sessions.

  • Find suitable spaces within office premises.

  • Explore funding options and secure sponsorships.

  • Communicate effectively to ensure high participation.

  • Use testimonials to showcase success and commitment to employee well-being.

Join us in celebrating International Day of Yoga 2024 and take the first step towards a healthier, happier workplace.


Conclusion


Implementing a Stretch & Mindfulness Initiative can significantly enhance workplace productivity and employee well-being. By following the outlined steps, HR professionals and management can create a supportive and engaging environment that promotes physical and mental health. If you need assistance with this initiative, feel free to reach out and start a conversation with Anista today.


If you haven't already, check out Part 1 of this blog post where we talk about how Yoga can boost workplace productivity.


Upcoming - Part 3 of this blog includes tips on reinforcing this initiative at home.

  • Importance of sleep

  • Tools

  • Subscriptions

  • Youtube as a resource


 
About Anista Employee Benefits: We aim to facilitate workplace employee benefits and well-being initiatives that are both sustainable and meaningful to employees. The result, a more engaged workplace community, and a happier place to work. If you would like to start a conversation on how Anista may be of service, I invite you to reach out. ~ Dujon - Founder.

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