Whether you’re competitive in nature or simply prefer to play for the love of the game, I think it’s safe to say it’s always nice to be counted among the best. That feeling also runs deep for the companies where we work.
By now you’re familiar with the well-known “top” employer lists, including Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For and Working Mother Magazine’s list of the 100 Best Companies. These annual contests draw attention to some amazing employee perks: Onsite child care, telecommuting, flextime and great health-care benefits.
I know what you’re thinking. We’re trying to promote healthy living around the office, but we don’t have Google’s gynormous budget to offer free daily “healthy and delicious meals prepared by gourmet chefs.” (Yes, this is a direct quote from their Web site’s Way Beyond the Benefits employment section.)
Let’s face the facts: Talented people are drawn to places like Google, but fortunately for the rest of us they can’t employ every great applicant. It’s time to evaluate your surroundings and implement programs to elevate your company to the top.
Try these simple initiatives to get the ball rolling.
Put free fruit in the breakroom a few days a week to encourage healthy eating.
Decorate the stairwells so it’s more enticing to skip the elevator the next time your team heads to the top for a meeting.
Get involved with the American Heart Association’s Start! walking program, which helps your company encourage its employees to live healthier lives.
Include healthy recipes and exercise tips in employee communications. The Live Healthy Iowa site is a great place to start.
Our own Principal Financial Group is continually ranked among the nation’s best employers. A quick glance at their list of employee benefits shows that employee health is a priority. They provide everything from medical, dental and vision insurance to wellness programs, on-site fitness facilities and no meeting Fridays.
Ultimately, looking out for employees and making sure they're taking care of themselves makes good business sense. And if Des Moines can snare the title “Hippest City in the USA” by Fast Company, your organization can land a top spot on the employer scene.