Wellness 101: Healthy Employees and a Healthier Bottom Line


According to Gallup’s State of the American Workplace report, only 33 percent of U.S. employees are engaged at work—that is, they love their jobs and work hard to make their organizations, and the products and services they deliver, better every day. Unfortunately, this means that the remaining 67 percent are disengaged from the work they do. Some of these disengaged workers just show up and punch the clock, while others are miserable and make it harder for your team to achieve its goals.

The question is this: why are so many employees unhappy at work and how can they reconnect?

While some employees become disengaged in their work because of bad managers, toxic company cultures and other workplace issues, there are people whose performance is dramatically impacted by poor health, illness and anxiety over access to good health care options. The good news is that businesses can provide employees with the kind of wellness options that lead to healthier employees—and greater productivity.

When employees aren’t distracted by health concerns, they are more engaged and emotionally connected to their jobs, making them feel even more invested in their work and in the outcomes they produce.

Aside from providing a more productive, happier, and less stressful workplace culture, healthy employees are critical for reducing a company’s costs in many tangible and powerful ways. A healthy staff means you won’t have to go through the exhausting (and costly) hiring process as frequently. Plus, employees who are rarely absent won’t put additional stress on other their coworkers, who would be forced to take on additional responsibilities.

So, what can companies do to help ensure the wellness of their employees? Plenty.

It’s interesting to note that some of the most effective wellness-related company benefits are also the most desired by employees. A survey of the most important benefits for job seekers revealed that better health, vision, and dental insurance were at the very top of the list, beating out other desired benefits such as more flexible hours, more vacation time, work-from-home options and paid parental leave. Furthermore, other wellness-related benefits also made the list, including free gym memberships, free fitness and yoga classes and on-site gyms. While not every company can afford to provide the benefits, it’s important to keep your employees’ needs in mind, especially as it relates to their health and wellness.

The health of your company is directly related to the health of your employees. The next time you notice a team member becoming disengaged at work, consider that it may not be a performance issue. Provide them with resources to address their personal needs, and partner with a benefits specialist who may help you steer them in the right direction. You’ll be helping your business at the same time.

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