3 Ways to Drive Company Culture & Employee Engagement

disengagedBusiness today is anything but usual. In recent years, corporate competition has reached new heights. With increased competition comes the need to keep up, and many organizations expect employees to be available 24/7. Thanks to technology, they can be – but it means they’re never unplugging from work, which drives burn out, higher levels of stress, and other unhealthy repercussions for employees.

This is affecting all aspects of employees’ lives, including their engagement.

If your people are spread thin, there’s a slim chance they’re taking the time they need for healthy habits like exercise, sleep and eating right – which only makes them feel worse. In fact, stress is behind an estimated 60 to 90 percent of doctor visits, according to Harvard Business Review, and anxious employees are racking up $600 more than average in healthcare annually, costing companies over $300 billion each year.

When employees aren’t feeling great, they’re not bringing their best to work, meaning poorer productivity and lower engagement rates for you. With 70 percent of U.S. workers disengaged, according to Gallup, checked-out employees are driving a $300 billion price tag in lost productivity, the same source reports.

The bright side here, though, is that you can do something about it. Show employees a little love by supporting all aspects of their well-being – including their physical, mental and social health. By driving a deeper relationship with your people and supporting their health, you’ll set them up for success, boost business (like higher productivity and profitability, and lower absenteeism, turnover, and safety and quality incidents, according to Gallup), and improve company culture.

Here are three ways you can make it happen.

  1. Make health a no-brainer

If your company culture’s driven by weekly donut deliveries and happy hours, it’s going to be hard for employees to get and stay healthy. Instead, encourage employees to hit the pavement instead of the bar, and replace the pastries with nutritious snacks. A healthy company culture makes it easier for employees to stick with their wellness goals so they can feel great at work and home.

  1. Cheer them on shutterstock_151790942

Show employees you care by supporting personal well-being and productivity goals and celebrating their daily wins. Whether that means a shout-out when they complete a big project before deadline, or offering financial rewards when they hit their activity goals within your corporate wellness program, a little encouragement goes a long way.

  1. Use technology for good

Today’s tech has made it easier than ever for employees to get work done. But if your employees are tethered to their devices round the clock, then tech may be to blame for their stress and disengagement. Encourage employees to unplug and make it clear you don’t expect they’ll respond to non-essential emails sent after their day’s done. You’ll help them relax and recharge so they can bring their best to work and focus on what matters.

Molding a healthier, more engaged, and productive workforce starts with small steps. Learn more about ways you can support employees’ and your company’s success by reading the survey report, “Win their hearts & minds: Show Employees You Care & Boost Engagement.

The Stars Among Us: Congrats to our “Star of the Year” Kate Colp!

Kate & RichardWhat’s Sir Richard Branson’s favorite night of the year? Celebrating all the hard-working Virgin Group employees worldwide who go above and beyond the call of duty.

Every year, employees at each of the Virgin Group companies nominate fellow Virgin team members who they consider their “Star of the Year”— then one or two from each company are selected as their companies’ Star and they get to spend a night partying the Virgin way with Richard, the Virgin team, and the other Stars around the world.

We’re excited to share Virgin Pulse’s Star of the Year is Kate Colp, Director of Client Services!

“Kate is an amazing colleague who takes great pride in everything she does. She works hard to put the customer first while embodying the values and brand behind Virgin. I have been both motivated and inspired by her ability to address difficult situations and overcome hurdles that we’re faced with each day,” said one of Kate’s colleagues at Virgin Pulse.

Kate, who’d also previously been nominated for this award, said she was truly honored and it meant a lot that she was selected knowing how many other great and hard-working employees there are at Virgin Pulse. “It’s full of inspiring people and I am appreciative every day of those I get to work with,” she said after receiving the honor.

Stars EntertainmentAfter being named Virgin Pulse’s Star of the Year for 2014, Kate and her husband went to the U.K. for five days and celebrated with other Stars at a rooftop gala dinner overlooking Kensington Gardens. With celebratory champagne, delicious food and a theme like “Putting on the Ritz,” Kate said it was the best party she’s ever been to.

“It was very Virgin. And the incredible thing is, the culture at the event—even with people from all over world—felt like the culture here at Virgin Pulse,” she said.  “Everyone I spoke to was positive, friendly, hardworking…it was amazing to see how the Virgin brand really is like one big family.”

Here’s to you Kate—you’re tireless work providing exceptional dedication to our clients inspires your whole department.

Want to see the celebration in action? Check out this video to get the full experience.

3 Tips to Help Your Employees Stay Healthy This Fall

JoggingAs summer ends and fall gets going, it’s often hard for people to switch gears. Staying active when the days keep getting shorter and colder is something we all struggle with. But it doesn’t have to be so daunting. Here are three tips you can use today to keep your employees motivated to stay active and healthy this fall so they’re able to perform at their peak all season long.

1)   Encourage everyone to keep healthy

We all know fall can sometimes mean “cold season.” It’s a lot easier for employees to do their best work if they’re feeling their best and not battling a bug. Consider using your well-being program to incentivize employees to get enough sleep (40% of U.S. adults don’t get enough!), go to their annual check-up, get a flu shot (if it’s recommended for them), and make sure they’re getting enough vitamins and minerals. These are all great ways employees can keep themselves healthy and be better able to focus on the pressing projects ahead. Oh, and don’t forget to keep hand sanitizer stations around wherever possible!

2)   Serve up healthy snacks

applesColder days can make everyone eye the hot chocolate and apple cider donuts—delicious, yes, but they don’t do anything good for employees’ health and productivity. Getting daily fruit doses, on the other hand, boosts the immune system and staves off illnesses. But unfortunately, most adults don’t get enough fruit each day – only 33% do, according to the CDC. Try ditching the office candy bowl and swapping out other unhealthy snacks for hot tea and fresh fruit instead.

3)   Make Getting Moving Fun!

Fall can also be a good time to talk with your employees about the importance of getting back into daily health routines. With work schedules becoming normal again after vacation season, planning an activity challenge can be a great way to motivate employees and get them to reconnect after the summer months. Remember, even if your workforce is in different areas, just knowing everyone is doing the same activity builds a stronger sense of culture and community.

Kick off the new season with these three tips and motivate your employees to maintain healthy habits all year round. Want more ideas on how to keep your employees healthy and engaged? Download this tip sheet, “10 tips to boost employee engagement.”

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Virgin Pulse clients and members discuss how we change lives for good!

Virgin Pulse clients and members discuss how we change lives for good!