Well-Being//

How to Create a Workplace That Prioritizes Employee Well-being

Emphasizing health and well-being as much as we emphasize work goals can lead to greater happiness, productivity, and success, says this top Bank of America Exec.

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Every time a new year rolls around, many of us make plans to become new and improved versions of ourselves. We set resolutions to exercise more, read more, be more organized, save money — and many of us set targets aimed at a healthier lifestyle too. For example, I start the year by sitting down with our household calendar to plan out all the annual medical, dental, and vision exams for my family of four.

I’m a believer in the expression “health is wealth,” because investing time in your wellness not only helps you live a longer, healthier life — it also helps you be the best version of yourself each and every day. That’s why I prioritize making time for my favorite physical wellness activities, Zumba and yoga. In fact, I teach yoga and donate the proceeds from my classes to the Girl Scouts. I find that contributing to my community is great for my emotional wellness, so it’s an important way for me to create balance in my life.

For the same reasons I seek holistic wellness in my personal life, I believe it’s important for companies to invest in their employees’ wellness by providing resources and support to stay healthy. In order for employees to do their jobs effectively, they have to be able to take care of themselves and their family first.

For example, at Bank of America, we focus on three tenets of wellness — emotional, physical and financial — and we offer flexible and competitive benefits to our 208,000 employees and their families. As you navigate your own company’s benefits and wellness initiatives, here are some tips on staying healthy in all aspects of work and life:

Build your team

Find a great primary care physician to be the quarterback of your health team. Then you can layer on any specialists you might need. Some companies offer health coaches and telemedicine providers to help round out your health care team.

Know your numbers

It’s important to have a full view of your current health status to ensure you’re giving attention to the areas that need it. Check to see if your company offers health screenings or wellness checks to get a baseline understanding of your health — and the areas to keep an eye on. You might even receive financial incentives by participating in proactive company programs.

Take your prescription maintenance medication

Adhering to your prescribed medication regimen can help reduce your risk of serious illness and provide better health outcomes. Prescription home delivery services — sometimes offered through employers — can also help you save time and ensure you don’t miss a dose.

Take advantage of physical wellness and emotional health programs

Many companies offer a variety of programs to support their employees’ physical and emotional well-being. These may include one-on-one health coaching and emotional health support, fitness center discounts, and activity challenges.  

Use available wellness tools

Online and mobile tools like Bank of America’s My Wellness offers Healthy Habits trackers, a sleep and nutrition guide, and more to help you achieve your health goals. Check to see if your company offers similar digital resources to track your health at your fingertips.

As the saying goes, old habits die hard. As we settle into our routines for 2020, it’s important to not lose sight of the goals we set in January — and let’s remember to take advantage of programs and benefits offered by our employers. Let’s prioritize our health and wellness in same way we prioritize our work goals — and make this year the best and healthiest one yet!

Investing time in your wellness not only helps support your health now — it can also help you to live a longer, healthier life.

Carmilla Tan, Head of Global Benefits at Bank of America
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