We make a lot of adjustments when the seasons change. Our wardrobe gets heavier with colder weather, and our meal choices often get lighter in the warmer months. And that’s not to mention the metabolic upsets many of us endure as the amount of daylight waxes and wanes over a year.
A change in seasons is a great time to think about other changes, especially in terms of health and well-being. That goes for your employees, too. It is a best practice to always know the answer to what is employee wellness and who benefits from it. The answers continually evolve.
Discovery Health is committed to helping businesses create the healthiest workplaces possible. We recognize that health needs are often linked to the seasons, so we’ve put together specific winter and summer wellness ideas to keep your employees engaged and actively participating all year long.
Review these two seasons’ worth of great corporate wellness program components!
Winter to Summer: Wellness Changes With the Seasons
Spring and autumn are typically characterized by change. They’re the “in-between” times when growth cycles are beginning or ending, temperatures fluctuate wildly, and most of us are searching for ways to avoid colds and flu.
But in summer and winter, wellness becomes more about tapping into your best self than trying to stave off viruses. We recommend winter and summer health and wellness tips that get people outdoors, moving their bodies, connecting with community and rediscovering the joy of fresh air and sunshine!
Summer Health and Wellness Tips and Ideas
Walk and Talk
A walk outdoors is the easiest form of exercise. Pair it with a friend for twice the healthful benefits! A good old-fashioned walk and talk — whether it’s around the parking lot at lunch, at a park after work or in your neighborhood on the weekend — does wonders to alleviate stress and bolster relationships while soaking up vitamin D and getting your steps in. Challenge your staff to log 20 minutes of walking with a buddy every day as part of your summer corporate wellness program.
Gym memberships paid for by the company can be a great way of investing in your employees’ physical health. But when exercise feels like play, people are far more eager to jump in and participate. Consider organizing a softball or volleyball team among your staff, then playing in a local league. Watersports like kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding bring playfulness to a lake or river setting — and many businesses offer rental equipment alongside tutorials for beginners. From a friendly flag football game to a spirited tug-of-war battle to a scavenger hunt for objects found in nature, play time builds trust and team spirit while encouraging movement and laughter.
The best corporate wellness programs improve both physical and mental health. We recommend “device downtime” as a workplace challenge because it not only covers both those areas but allows for flexibility. The idea is to mark off time every day when you simply do not engage with your phone, laptop and other devices. It can be for any amount of time — 30 minutes, an hour, an entire Sunday — and you can customize this corporate wellness challenge to your workers with various levels of participation and rewards. Employees might feel compelled to be available 24/7 but if management makes it clear that these off hours are off limits for work – then workers will most likely comply. Device downtime is one of our favorite summer health and wellness tips for preventing workplace burnout while encouraging your people to go out and enjoy the warm weather.
WFH Wellness: Better Boundaries
Promoting summer wellness programs to your staff can be difficult if many of them are working from home. One way to show your remote employees that you understand the complexities of working where you also cook, sleep and relax is to make healthier boundaries a staple of your summer wellness program. This challenge is similar to Device Downtime: No checking of email or business-related online chats between specific times of day, typically something like 6 p.m. and 8 a.m. There is no need to spell out what employees SHOULD do during that time — but by eliminating the unspoken tether to their work email, you are freeing your workers to embrace summer wellness in whatever way they like!
Winter Wellness Tips and Ideas
A Different Kind of Gift List
Winter ushers in numerous gift-giving occasions, from religious holidays to year-end bonuses and thank-you tokens. One of the coolest winter wellness tips is a gift that involves no buying or wrapping. It is an activity that can help your team bond, break down barriers between departments and spark a lot of creative ideas!
Here’s how it works: Pair employees through a blind draw and have each describe what the other is good at. When we focus in on naming each other’s gifts — like public speaking or consistent punctuality or deep knowledge of the Lakers’ bench from their move to Los Angeles in 1960 to LeBron’s debut in purple and gold — we see the value in our connections and cultivate a workplace culture of appreciation and respect. It’s an easy corporate wellness investment aimed at improving negative work environments.
Vitamins and Vaccines
Finding winter wellness activities that your entire team can get onboard with can be challenging. But pretty much everyone wants to steer clear of seasonal ailments. To really boost corporate wellness, companies across industries have discovered the value of vitamin B12 injection workplace clinics. Offering vitamin shots that are administered onsite by health professionals proves to your workers that you value their overall health. These metabolic powerhouse supplements can improve mood, increase productivity and support everyone’s immune system — which might translate to less absenteeism due to illness.
Once the holidays are over and the New Year has begun, corporate wellness programs can start to feel like just another obligation. Bring them back to life with winter wellness activities that connect your workforce to the wider community. Challenge employees to volunteer at a local soup kitchen, pick up trash along the roadside or spend time with residents of a nursing home. When we give our time to helping others, we gain a new perspective on our own abundance. This can be a great way of including families in your corporate wellness program, which raises the odds of universal buy-in while raising your company’s public profile.
Whether they’re working from home or commuting to the office, all employees can benefit from periodic dance breaks. And just a few minutes of busting a move to your favorite tunes gets your blood pumping, defuses stress and brings on a happier mood. Encourage your WFH staff to stand up and boogie down for three to five minutes every hour. In a more structured environment, consider the “silent disco” method of rocking out via headphones on a mid-morning or afternoon break. If your team is outgoing, a night of karaoke or a group ballroom (or any dance) class could really strengthen their nonverbal communication skills while evoking laughter and promoting winter wellness.
Corporate Wellness From Discovery Health
Want more winter and summer wellness ideas that are tailored to your industry, workforce and budget? We have plenty. Contact Discovery Health to start building corporate wellness into your brand today for a healthier bottom line tomorrow.