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Set a healthy example of work-life balance

- Bill Leaver, CEO, UnityPoint Health

We’ve all got a sense of purpose, and in the workplace, it is often tied to a company vision, set of values or guiding principles. At UnityPoint Health, our purpose is Best Outcome for Every Patient Every Time. That mindset guides every decision we make and every patient we treat.

I’ve learned that it is incredibly important for employees to take ownership in the mission and values of their place of work. Believing in the purpose of an organization ensures that employees can find fulfillment in the work being done, which is wonderful.

And just like it’s important for our employees at UnityPoint Health to give patients the best outcome every day, we want them to take care of themselves. All sorts of studies indicate that happy, healthy employees equal satisfied, repeat customers, so it’s up to the leaders at each business to demonstrate ways to maintain a healthy work style and avoid burnout.
This doesn’t mean you need to start running marathons or switch to all organic meals, but a few simple steps will inspire your employees to take care of themselves. In the long run, these efforts will help your company grow:

1. Take time off.

I know it’s tempting to check email on vacation or the weekends, and hold onto those PTO hours for when “things slow down,” but trust me, you don’t want to burn out. You also don’t want to set an unsustainable pace for your employees. So go away for a few days and be sure to relax. Use vacations to allow you to recharge, mentally, emotionally and physically, so you can come back ready and raring to go. Encourage your employees to do the same, so that you can all continue to put your best foot forward in the workplace.

2. Have fun!

Life is short, and we all spend many of our days at the office. Find ways to bring fun and laughter into your organization. This helps build relationships and reduce stress. Schedule the occasional office gathering and use humor with employees to help boost productivity.

3. Get moving.
You’ve all heard of the “sitting disease” by now. Stand up and stretch your legs a few times a day, as well as give your eyes a break from the computer screen. It gets your blood moving and the creative juices flowing. Participate in the ongoing wellness activities at the office. Form a team or create a fitness challenge to build teamwork and get some exercise.

Remember, you as a leader set the tone of the organization. Your employees know you expect the best – maybe you’ve even spelled that out for them in your mission statement. Good health is the first step to reaching new heights.


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