The dispirited workforce is pretty entrenched: Gallup reported in 2013 that 70 percent of employees are less than fully engaged in their jobs. So how to nurture espirit de corps?
Michael Prager, a wellness innovator who provides programs and coaching to midsize and large employers, advises seeing wellness as the holistic challenge it is, by offering programs that speak to employees’ goals and needs, while also achieving what the company needs.
“If you want wellness, teach wellness,” Prager says. “Silo-ed programs dedicated to eliminating a bad habit — poor nutrition, lack of exercise, smoking, etc. — can be helpful, but their greater promise is in making employees less unwell, rather than well.
“Also, erasing a negative has far less attraction than moving toward a positive, which may help explain why the typical corporate wellness program engages less than a quarter of a workforce,” Prager says.
Prager draws several tenets of his material from observing nature, which he says has 3.8 billion years of survival street cred. Notably, he points to nature’s reliance on community, in examples ranging from symbiosis to the herd instinct.
“Individuals in these relationships survive and thrive when the whole also thrives. By promoting collaboration and community, by demonstrating that it knows individual and collective gain go hand in hand, companies can foster the sort of spirit that bolsters bottom lines,” Prager says.
Michael Prager helps smart companies achieve sustainable business by working toward sustainable wellness for their employees. Learn more at MichaelPrager.com.