Why Corporate CEO’s Should Look at Fitness and Health
There are many factors to making people obese and the #1 reason might surprise you. Yes, the #1 reason for someone to be obese is financial worth. This of course trickles down into other social-economic factors such as: education, nutrition, resources and job stability. But in the end the money you make will most likely dictate your health. Now how much should companies and CEO’s care about your health? If they understand the big picture they should care a lot.
Companies are now slowly understanding the financial impact of having unhealthy employees and how it’s effecting the bottom line. Obesity in the workplace attributes to more frequent absences and a higher number of doctor appointments per year. Add to the fact that the highest population of obese are the “baby bombers” (Ages 55-64) we are in for more financial hardships to come (Stat-can.gc.ca). The office is making people ill, and everyone wants to “appear” that they are doing more for their company by eating their lunch at their desk while answering emails. According to a UK Study, 50% of employees never even go for a walk or a breath of fresh air during their day. TV nutritionist and author Amanda Hamilton states, “We have the best intentions to save time by eating at our desks so we can focus on our work, but the foods that we snack on, along with the other bad habits are actually causing people to be less productive which can mean that simple tasks are taking longer than they should (Styles, Ruth, Daily.co.uk.com).
When it comes down to Corporate CEO’s, they have to take a closer look at stress and job performance. We can almost take for granted that most people are overworked, stressed, need more sleep and probably need a few more vegetables and fruit in their diet. With that taken into account, why are not more CEO’s looking to change these things? 1 big reason is that there is no quantitate data to suggest that Mr. Jenkins a big time lawyer on Wall Street will be able to bill more hours if his boss offered him 2 Yoga classes, and a vegan lunch 1x per week. Also, won’t it be uncomfortable telling Nancy over in cubicle 5 that her unhealthy McDonalds lunch binges and high cholesterol are costing the company money? Their lies the problem for companies and why it’s vital for Corporate CEO’s to create incentives and set a healthy example in the workplace.
Corporate CEO’s need to take iniatives to not only promote healthy living in the workplace but explain to their staff why it’s important. I know it may be a bit awkward explaining to staff that being unhealthy is hurting the bottom line. But in the long run it will benefit the company, the individual and the tax payer.
Here are a few things to consider if you are a corporate CEO:
1) Lunch and Learn with a health professional. Hire a personal trainer, yoga, dietician, massage therapists or chiropractor to offer a free lunch and give your staff a brief tutorial of what they do and the benefits.
2) Offer discounted gym memberships or personal training services
3) Hire a cook 1X per month to give healthy recipe ideas
4) Make sure that staff use their extended health. This can be used towards Massage, Chiropractor and Physiotherapists. If they do not use the allocated amount, they can pay that money back into a company “pot” which could be spend into a healthy team outing.
5) Do healthy team building activities: Bike to work competitions, boot camps participations, etc.
6) Sleep pods: No, seriously 20 minutes of napping can equal up to 2 hours at night. Naps are not for lazy people, they are build for efficiency.
In the end, it’s up to the Corporate CEO to provide their employees with resources and incentives to live a more stress-free and healthy life. But more importantly it’s up the CEO to tell the “honest” truth of why they are truly doing so, because let’s be honest in the end it’s a business and we are all in it to make money.