Archives for posts with tag: wellness

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Being healthy in the workplace can be challenging, especially when you feel like you don’t have the time. But it’s easy to take small steps to becoming more active in the office and motivate not only yourself, but your coworkers as well – creating a more positive work environment.

Do it Together

Teaming up with the people around you can be a great way to stay motivated. Schedule a walking meeting and chat with a team member while you take a lap around the building. Request that healthy substitutes be added to your vending machines. Join a fitness class with your coworkers or inquire about any gym membership perks or fitness classes offered through your company. For example, The HON Company is now offering a free Dance Fitness class for members in the evening and uses space in one of the manufacturing facilities to host the class.

Skip the Snacks

Pink sprinkles, smooth frosting, fluffy filling, sugary dough. The aroma of a freshly baked donut seems to have drifted past your desk. It’s not unusual for HON members to celebrate a birthday or a team success with yummy treats around the office.  It is okay to give in once in a while, but in moderation. It’s always a good idea to keep healthy snacks, such as granola bars, fruit or nuts, close at hand in your overhead storage or HON pedestal for when you’re feeling tempted. When you eat these nutrient-packed foods instead, you’ll stay full longer and find it easier to turn down the sweets.

Come Prepared

We are all allowed to treat ourselves to the occasional lunch out with coworkers, but waking up 10 minutes early to put together a healthy lunch and/or eat a healthy breakfast in the morning is another great way to help you avoid snacking throughout the day. To keep yourself healthy and focused during work hours, it’s also important to stay hydrated. According to the Mayo Clinic, the recommended amount of water intake is about 3 liters (13 cups) for men and 2.2 liters (9 cups) for women per day. Bring your favorite water bottle or mug and keep it at your workstation to remind you to keep drinking throughout the day. Before you know it, you won’t even realize you’re grabbing for it!

Mix Up Your Office Furniture

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The right office furniture can also create a healthier work environment. From a variety of seating solutions and standing-height desks to collaborative lounge furniture, HON has products that encourage workers to get up and move around the office as they transition between different work spaces. The way your space is designed matters, too. The right layout can motivate us to be more active, even if we just make the conscious choice to walk over and talk to someone instead of sending an email.

What are your tips and tricks for a healthier workplace?

Boosting employee morale

With the influx of Millennials coming into the workforce, companies are having to look at more creative ways to attract and retain new candidates. A quick search for articles on Millennials in the workplace will return thousands of hits on everything from generational gaps, motivational tips, how to work with Millennials, and ways to keep new talent. Below are 5 tips that will not only boost attention from Millennial candidates, but also help improve morale for your existing workforce:

  1. Recognition and Responsibility

Recognizing those who contribute to the overall benefit of the company provides the feeling of accomplishment that almost every employee desires. Whether it’s a process change, customer feedback, a new account, or personal achievement, giving recognition for a job well done is one of the easiest changes management can make to increase energy levels in the office.

Not only is the new workforce motivated by recognition, but also by responsibility. Across generations, employees want to feel like they are contributing to something greater and want to see that they have a real impact on change. For employees who prove themselves, adding additional responsibilities can not only have a positive impact on their performance, but also inspire them to contribute new innovative ideas.

  1. Fun Fridays

There are many different ideas for a fun Friday in the office, but the main point is to give employees something to look forward to throughout the work week. Companies across the country have developed different versions of Friday afternoon fun ranging from casual days, cooking classes, employee outings, or games. The most important thing to consider when planning these events is to make it consistent, ask for employee recommendations, and make it something everyone can participate in.

  1. Coffee, Juice, & Water

These three items are quite possibly what motivate me the most. I look forward to having a good cup of coffee in the morning followed by fresh juice and water throughout the day. People are becoming more and more health conscious, so many new workers are not impressed with the junk food and soda pop offered in vending machines. What better way to show you care about your employees’ wellbeing than to offer healthy options as a perk to working with your company? Yes, even coffee has some health benefits.

  1. Bring Home to the Office

This doesn’t necessarily mean you need to install “napping” pods, but consider the overall environment in your office. Is there enough natural light? Do employees have the option to bring their pets to work? Have you incorporated comfortable, inviting touch down spaces into your design? Even a little color throughout the office, whether through pictures, rugs, wall coverings, or panels could help bring new-found energy to the workplace.

  1. Give Back and Celebrate Local Businesses

My last tip is a little outside the box, but one of my favorites. New and veteran employees can all appreciate wanting to support local businesses, especially if your company is also a local business. Why not bring those businesses to your office? Once a month or quarter have a day which showcases a local business or multiple businesses by setting up a “shop” in your conference room. During the summer months, offer a farmer’s market in the parking lot where employees can shop during their lunch break. HON recently participated in a business day for local middle school students in Muscatine to come and learn about manufacturing, providing an opportunity to tour our buildings and learn about an industry they might not otherwise have exposure to. This is just one of the many ways HON likes to give back to and take pride in its community.

What are some of the perks that you especially enjoy at your office?

Stress Less in the office with these 4 tips from HON

No matter how much you love what you do, sometimes you can’t avoid the occasional stress that comes with responsibilities in the office, and this can affect productivity. Whether you’re preparing for a big presentation or product launch, addressing a customer service request or just facing an unusually heavy workload, we all know what it’s like to feel overwhelmed. Instead of letting these stressors get to you or waiting until you get home to unwind, here are 4 easy ways to take a few minutes at your desk or workstation to relieve the tension:

  1. One of the best cures for stress is to just get up and walk away from your workspace for a few minutes. Taking a step back from the task at hand and allowing yourself to take a mental break can work wonders. Clear your mind and lose yourself in a short magazine article, or walk to the breakroom and grab some water. Take a few deep breathes and you’ll be ready to get back to work.
  2. I personally am really into scents and a small trick that helps me relieve stress is the smell of lavender. You can easily incorporate this into your daily routine with lavender hand lotion, or my favorite, lavender lip balm, and the fragrance is known to cure tension. I like to always keep some Lubriderm’s Shea + Calming Lavender Jasmine lotion on hand in my easy-to-access Contain® storage pedestal!
  3. Another favorite stress-reducing tip is to sip on some mint tea. Not only is this supposed to help relieve stress, but mint tea is also great for your skin! While you drink your tea, find a relaxing playlist on Pandora or Spotify and get yourself into a stress-free zone so that you can perform to your maximum potential.
  4. Last, but definitely not least, I recommend trying acupressure. For example, there is a spot on your hand between your thumb and index finger called the “web”. If you massage this area it should help to calm your nerves. Looking for some other acupressure points to try out? Check these out.

I hope that these tips come in handy next time you’re facing the occasional workplace stress. Grab your lavender lotion, mint tea, and favorite playlist and let your troubles subside so that you can achieve your career goals!

Walk

As a member of the HNI Healthworks team, I spend time with other members within the company working to encourage healthy habits in the workplace. Workplace wellness continues to be a hot topic, both inside and outside the world of office furniture. Moreover, working for an office furniture manufacturer provides a very unique insight into this issue.

On one hand, as a HON member, I like knowing that people can put our seating products to good use. We offer a large variety of styles, functions, and features—executive chairs, modern chairs, chairs with more adjustments than I ever knew possible, and even reception area chairs. When designing our products, we make sure that it not only passes testing standards for safety, but we want it to be comfortable as well. One perk of working at HON is that our members are given the chance to test out new products and provide feedback to the designers and engineers before anyone else.

On the other hand, as someone who is fairly active, I also know how physically taxing it can be to remain at your desk for eight or more hours. I know, I know—sitting is hard?! It may sound crazy, but studies have shown that there can be negative side effects to remaining seated for too long without any movement.  Sitting is necessary for me to accomplish my work, and as much as I like my HON chair, I sometimes need a little break from sitting.

So what can you do? Here are a couple of helpful tips that I’ve been able to implement into my daily routine:

1. Take a walk! Everyone needs to take a break from work for a few moments during the workday, and I like to spend mine walking. My coworkers can attest to the fact that I can be spotted making a loop through our building, or even walking a lap in the parking lot during my breaks or over lunch.

2. Want a few extra steps?  Choose a parking spot that’s further away from the entrance to the building.

3. Take the long route when heading to the restroom, meeting room, break room, etc.

4. Skip the elevator (as your health allows) and take the stairs instead.

5. Eat your lunch away from your desk. Even if you just go to the break room or cafeteria, getting away from your desk not only gives you a chance to get some steps in, but it’s also a great way to “reset” yourself mentally.

6. If you have standing-height tables available for meetings or breaks, use them! You might not be moving, but standing for a meeting can be beneficial for your overall mobility.

7. Drink water—staying hydrated is important for your health, and the more you get up to grab a refill, the more steps you take.

These are just a handful of ways that I incorporate movement and activity into my day. Share your workplace wellness tips below!

If you are anything like me when you travel, whether it is for business or pleasure, you like to enjoy the delicious local foods. This also means, like me, the instant your plane lands on your home turf you feel the overwhelming feeling of guilt from over-indulging while traveling. As a sales person, my job requires me to travel A LOT to some beautiful parts of America, where every corner I turn there seems to be some butter-soaked, chocolate-covered, loaded-with-guilt, “must try” cuisine. I constantly find myself struggling with how to enjoy the local delicacy without having to let my pants out an inch or two every time I get home. I rely on these 4 tips each time I travel to maintain the “these pants fit just right” feeling while avoiding the “I have my tailor on speed dial to let these pants out” moment.

Goal one: Follow the 1 to 3 rule

The 1 to 3 rule means that for every 3 healthy meals I eat while traveling I will allow myself 1 “cheat” meal. This rule allows me about one meal of indulgence every other day. This gives me just the right amount of taste for the local cuisine without going overboard.

Goal Two: Take an extra STEP

According to thewalkingsite.com, a healthy person should get a minimum of 10,000 steps in a day, equivalent to walking 5 miles. Often times while traveling you find yourself sitting on a plane, sitting in an airport, sitting in public transit or worse….sitting in local traffic! This makes it difficult to walk 10,000 steps in one day, but if you make a conscious effort to achieve the 10,000 you will find unique opportunities to take an EXTRA STEP here and there. During a layover, instead of choosing a coffee shop right next to your gate, choose one that is in a separate concourse. This allows you to get in some extra steps while walking back to your gate for your flight.

Goal three: Be “Runtastic”

You could also call this Goal two part A, but for the sake of simplicity I call it goal three. The fact is that you may challenge yourself to take the extra steps but it is difficult to know if you are reaching the goal of 10,000, especially if you do not have a Jawbone™ or Fitbit® to help keep track for you. But of course…there is an app for that! I found that downloading the Runtastic app to my smartphone allows me to track my steps, understand what parts of the day I am most active and even know my average pace. For an extra health boost, push yourself to increase your walking speed by 1% each week.

Goal four: Food Trip every meal

The Food Tripping app allows you to search for healthy restaurants and markets ANYWHERE. It is a super easy app to use. It simply picks up your location and pings restaurants and markets around you that have plenty of healthy options. You can click on the ping and it will tell you the distance to the healthy location and directions to get there. I use it every time I am trying to stay true to my 1 to 3 rule.

As my business and personal life takes me to all different parts of the world, these 4 tips will help keep me healthy while I’m on the go. What other tricks do you use to stay healthy on the go?

Team Meeting In Creative Office

At times, finding an open window of time to meet with an entire project group can be difficult. How can you make the most of your time? Let’s look at a few ways to keep meetings on task and more efficient.

Share Expectations
In the meeting invitation, include an agenda and attendee expectations. The agenda gives the attendees an idea of what will be discussed.  This allows them to have their thoughts together so they can join into the conversation. Letting attendees know if they need to have anything prepared will make sure everyone is ready to share ideas and keep the meeting rolling.

Set Your Space
In preparation for the meeting, ensure the room you reserve meets all of your space requirements. Determine if there is enough seating for all those attending the meeting so you aren’t searching for an extra chair when the meeting should be starting. Make sure the meeting space offers the equipment you need, whether this is a screen and projector or flip chart.  Having your space prepared for success will keep the meeting running smoothly.

Get Started
Start on time. The attendees know what time the meeting was scheduled to start. Therefore, it’s important to be respectful of their time, especially if it is just a short window of availability. Begin the meeting at the start time and immediately start covering items on the agenda.

Offer Support Materials
Bring handouts for all attendees if necessary. And if you will be handing something out, make sure you have enough for each attendee. Handouts can be helpful if a large amount of information is presented in a short time to allow the attendees to have a hard copy to review.

Close the Loop
Recap the meeting and the follow-up activities. If there are action items coming out of the meeting, it is good practice to send out a follow-up communication summarizing those items.  Be sure to include what tasks will be completed by the next meeting and/or specific deadlines.

What tactics do you use to keep your meetings productive?

A few years ago I came across an Inc article that sang praises for the benefits of bringing your dog to work. According to a Virginia Commonwealth University study, workers who brought their dogs with them to work “experienced lower stress levels throughout the work day, reported higher levels of job satisfaction, and had a more positive perception of their employer.” How can you argue with that?!

Below are a few examples of some of our favorite 4-legged friends busy at work.  Who else has canines as co-workers? We would love to see your pics!

Even Maslow can’t help but Migrate to Flock.

Even Maslow can’t help but Migrate to Flock.

Bones showing his immense admiration for the unmatched comfort of Nucleus.

Bones showing his immense admiration for the unmatched comfort of Nucleus.

Lollipop taking a spin on Purpose.

Lollipop taking a spin on Purpose.

Ceres seating makes a 'ruff' day at the office much more enjoyable.

Ceres seating makes a ‘ruff’ day at the office much more enjoyable.

Steve giving Voi his official seal of approval.

Steve giving Voi his official seal of approval.

Rambo chilling out on Flock.

Rambo chilling out on Flock.

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