Health Links [HL]: What does being a healthy workplace mean to your organization?
Walking Mountains Science Center [WMSC]: Being a healthy workplace means supporting our employees and constantly striving to make health and well-being part of our culture. We want employees to feel good about themselves, the work we are doing, and the world around us. Fostering a healthy work environment helps our employees achieve the goals they set for themselves and our organization and enables them to thrive in and out of the workplace. Our Guiding Principles are our foundation: Listen First; Celebrate Our Successes; Work with Purpose; Foster a Healthy Work Environment; and Promote Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.
HL: How does your organization create a culture of health, safety, and well-being for employees?
WMSC: Maintaining our culture of workplace health and well-being takes commitment from our leadership team, the work of our employee wellness committee, and partnership with our health insurance provider. We offer a variety of health, safety, and well-being options to employees like monthly paid wellness time and rewards, health and safety trainings throughout the year, ergonomic workstations, and our scenic campus environment featuring hiking trails and plenty of fresh air. We demonstrate our commitment to work, life integration by offering flextime, flexible scheduling and telecommuting options, family-friendly workplace policies, and a generous paid time off program.
HL: What changes have you seen among your employees, their families, or the surrounding community as a result of your program(s)?
WMSC: A recent employee engagement survey of our staff showed positive trends on questions regarding cultivating positive staff culture and support in the areas of health and well-being. This is rewarding to see! The progress of our wellness programs and support from leadership are key contributors to this success. Employees plan for their wellness time and prioritize health during the workday. New employees are introduced to these programs on day one and know that we support their health and well-being, which is critical for our sustainability and future.
HL: How has Health Links helped your organization?
WMSC: Health Links has been instrumental in helping us prioritize our health and safety goals each year. The experience and knowledge of our advisor, and the resources they have shared, have been great assets to help us guide our programs. This has ultimately assisted us in implementing new policies, benefits, and activities for all employees.
HL: What tips or pieces of advice would you give to a workplace looking to create a healthier, safer, and happier environment?
WMSC: Be collaborative! Ask your employees what would make them feel healthier, safer, and happier. Form a staff wellness committee, survey employees to gain an understanding of what they need, and ask for feedback.