If you’re looking for ways to improve employee morale and productivity, look no further than the office environment. Unfortunately, there are many ways in which the office environment can be contributing to not only unhealthy employees but unhealthy work as well. According to the Centers for Disease Control, healthier employees are more productive. Also, healthy employees lead to lower health care costs, so there are many benefits to be had from improving upon any health issues in the office environment. In this article, we’ll look at eight common health issues that often affect the traditional office space.
Lack of Movement.
A sedentary lifestyle carries with it a host of health risks including increased risks of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, obesity, colon cancer, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, lipid disorders, depression, and anxiety. Not only are these risks a huge issue, but a lack of movement can increase the risk of ergonomic disorders like carpal tunnel syndrome, bursitis, arthritis, low back pain, plantar fasciitis, and shoulder impingement syndrome. There may be an unspoken rule about moving around during the workday being frowned upon. If employees don’t feel like they can freely move, this contributes to an unhealthy workplace.
Unhealthy Food Options.
Many offices are stocked with unhealthy snacks that are full of salt, sugar, and fat. Whether it’s snacks and food in the company kitchen or the office building vending machine, they generally tend to be on the unhealthy side. Not only do these snacks contribute to obesity, but they also tend to depress moods, and lower energy levels. This contributes to poor morale at work and a lower quality of work all the way around.
Supporting Damaging Habits.
In many offices, there can be unspoken rules that are part of the culture about rewarding unhealthy habits. Whether it’s the norm that the most stressed-out person is working the hardest, or that people who work overtime care about their jobs, rewarding unhealthy habits can be a part of health issues in today's workplace.
Lack of Opportunities for Socialization.
The team that plays together works well together. A lack of opportunities for your employees to socialize together can prevent the synergy and comradery that leads to working well together. Not only can this impact the quality of work, but it can increase a sense of isolation for employees. This is going to harm employee's mental health. In addition, employees that don’t know each other well may be less likely to reach out and work together on work issues.
Not Enough Resources.
If your employees lack educational materials and resources about healthy lifestyles, how can you expect them to change? A memo and a half-hearted walking program aren’t enough to solve the issue of an unhealthy workplace. Employees may need educational materials and resources, like books and classes to make healthy changes in their lives.
One of the unhealthy aspects of many offices is their inflexible schedules. These are especially hard for parents with young children, leading them to often have to choose between their child and their job. For some reason, many companies are very rigid about the work hours they keep. While employees need to be able to work together, the benefits of flexible work hours can be seen in an increase in employee morale and productivity.
Lack of Teamwork.
This ties into a lack of socialization. Office cultures that foster cutthroat competition and individualism lose out on the benefits of healthy teamwork. Healthy teamwork is necessary for a business to compete in today’s workforce.
Too Much Stress.
Not only is stress bad for your employee’s health, but it’s also bad for productivity and morale. Consider sending out an anonymous survey about stress levels to see what the common stress areas are and then doing what you can to improve or eliminate those stressors.
Improve Your Office’s Health with Biofunctional Health Solutions!
Stumped about where to start when it comes to the health of your office? Biofunctional Health Solutions has been helping businesses just like yours become healthier and more productive since 2007. Whether you’re dealing with a rash of office-related injuries or stress among your workforce that’s impacting teamwork and productivity, Biofunctional Health Solutions has, well, a solution. They can help you assess the situation at your office and work with you and your budget to come up with a plan of action. Contact them today to get started on creating a healthier, more productive office environment.
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