One of the greatest challenges HR departments face when creating and implementing a corporate wellness program is the buy-in of company leadership. A lot of this has to do with the funds and resources needed upfront to get this kind of initiative off the ground. However, leadership is much more likely to be interested and supportive of any corporate initiative that speaks to the company’s mission. And, surprisingly enough, employees will be more engaged if the programs align with the ethos of the company culture — which is a result of the mission and vision of the company.

The importance of company culture

When you boil it down, your company’s ability to deliver on its mission and goals directly corresponds with the quality of work being produced by your employees. The level of quality and productivity of employees can be directly tied to a healthy company culture — one that exudes the corporate values.

Forbes addressed this very thing in a recent article stating, “According to research by Deloitte, 94% of executives and 88% of employees believe a distinct corporate culture is important to a business’ success. Deloitte’s survey also found that there is a strong correlation between employees who claim to feel happy and valued at work and those who say their company has a strong culture.” The same article went on to address why wellness is a key aspect of creating this strong culture, “No organization can expect to foster a positive culture without healthy employees. Employees need to feel their best — physically, mentally and emotionally — in order to contribute to a positive culture. In many ways, employee wellness is a foundation for a positive corporate culture.”

Aligning with existing values

If wellness is a foundational element of a healthy culture, wellness programs should be aligned with and promote your company’s existing culture, ethos and mission. Consider the following questions as you think about your current or proposed corporate wellness initiatives:

  • Do the benefits you provide, or hope to provide, help employees accomplish the company’s main mission?
  • Do they manifest executive leadership’s vision or values in the area of wellness? Are employees aware of leadership’s interest in wellness and a strong company culture?
  • Will your employees connect the purpose of the corporate wellness program with the ethos of the company’s culture?

Making sure those values are clearly understood

The most successful corporate wellness programs align with the company mission and culture, and their purpose is clearly understood by the entire company. As opposed to just adopting the first wellness program you find that seems good enough, companies that have created a thoughtful and tailored approach will have greater success communicating this purpose and therefore, be more successful in its execution. To help your team successfully do this, while aligning the program with the company’s existing culture and mission, consider crafting a specific mission statement for your wellness initiative that will be communicated and understood by your workforce.

This approach is used by best-practice company, Adobe. “Adobe…has a defined mission statement that guides their entire program. Having a mission statement is a great way to clarify the intentions of your employee wellness program. Your wellness mission statement can also be used as a reference point. This helps to simplify your wellness strategy by defining a clear direction for your wellness program to go.” Creating this mission statement, in conjunction with the company’s overall mission, helps provide clarity, direction and hopefully encouragement.

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