When utilized wisely a robust whole-person wellness program benefits the entire community - residents and staff alike.It all boils down to philosophy and the policies supporting that philosophy. If fitness creates wellbeing among residents, it also fosters wellbeing among staff – and happy staff members often are our best employees, resulting in happy residents and family members. Therefore, consider encouraging staff to be active participants in the wellness program by uplifting wellness as a value of the organization with policies that allow staff to participate.
INTEGRATING STAFF INTO WELLNESS
There are numerous ways to encourage and integrate staff into the wellness program.Here are a few suggestions:
Introduce campus sports – Create a training program for campus sports such as Bocce ball, putting, billiards, shuffleboard, power walking, corn hole toss, horseshoes, and pickle ball. Staff members would be recruited by management (hopefully, some will volunteer) to be coaches for these sports. In turn, the coaches recruit residents to be on the team of their respective sport and meet and practice weekly for 30 minutes to one hour. Bi-annually, hold a tournament of residents against staff. A little hearty competition and staff-to-resident interaction can energize residents, staff, and their relationships with one another.If nearby communities also offer similar sports, challenge them to an annual tournament of champions.
Offer turbo-charged fitness classes for staff – Since it has been determined that exercise, even in shorter durations, has a beneficial impact on our health, offer 15-minute turbo exercise classes for staff participation during the hours most staff take their lunch breaks.
Offer exercise classes at employee-friendly times – Consider the times of day at change of shift and offer full exercise classes for people who would like involvement after work. Access to an indoor pool and a water aerobics class will benefit some staff members before they transition to their lives at home.
Offer incentive programs – Whether it is the traditional walk 10,000 steps, a weight-loss program, or a competition for how many minutes one exercises in a single day, create a healthy contest with a meaningful reward.
The variety of amenities, services, and classes within our communities can contribute to the wellbeing of all. Staff participation in a wellness program can serve as a perk for employees, contribute to their wellbeing, and assist in the development of their relationships with each other and with residents. It’s a win-win for all while creating an atmosphere of vitality and whole-person wellness that many of our customers seek.
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About the Author
Patty Scotten is a consultant with Retirement DYNAMICS® and serves as their marketing manager. Patty has over twenty five years’ experience in the senior living industry and has led several communities in preselling expansions or increasing occupancy levels. She graduated from Elon University and holds a Masters Degree from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Patty is licensed as both an assisted living and nursing home administrator.