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Cory Arcarese

Are you a business owner who thinks that you should keep out of your employees’ personal lives? 

Think again. 

The physical and mental health of your employees directly impacts their productivity and should very much be a priority for your company. 

Allowing your employees to take a mental day off is a good idea. Providing healthy eating options in your employee cafeteria sends the message that you care about how your team cares for themselves. Think about providing incentives to exercise and enjoy the benefits of workers who are more productive. 

Southeast Colorado Springs has some of the highest diabetes rates in the city. On average, primary care physicians see 1,669 patients per year — each. With the onset of the COVID-19 virus, minority populations are hardest hit because they are essential workers. Appropriate health and safety regulations save lives, and helping employees take care of themselves is vital

Business owners can shine by doing the right thing and incorporating some of the following ideas:

Encourage employees to take breaks from work to stretch, exercise or check in with supportive colleagues, coworkers, family and friends

Encourage workers to spend time outdoors, either being physically active or relaxing, Add an extra break to the work schedule

If your employee works from home, set a regular time to end their work and, if possible, to stretch

Ask them to practice mindfulness techniques

Have them do things they enjoy during non-work hours

Pay for an app like Calm to help them relax

Invest in training — learning new skills is a great way to keep employees motivated

Modify policies and practices around sick and vacation time

Set up virtual social events to help reduce pandemic stress

Make sure employees know how to reach out to organizations like NAMI

Take a poll of ideas from employees 

Business owners can also incorporate local businesses who specialize in keeping our community healthy. Elena Salinas from A Fresh Move mobile grocery has a website where you can order fresh food delivered to your business on a weekly basis so your employee can take home and prepare delicious meals. Elena is a recent 2021 Colorado Springs Business Journal Rising Star recipient. Feeding her community healthy food is her vision. Making her website known to their employees and offering coupons would be a great idea.

Jarvis Harrod, professional trainer at I’MPOSSIBLE Performance Training is a performance specialist that is hyper focused on improving health and wellness. He is a Southeast Colorado Springs native. Here is testimonial from one of his clients, “I want to give Jarvis Harrod a huge shout out for helping me in my fitness journey! I completed a six-week personal training program, and I am down 24.8 lbs. and have gained 5.6 lbs. in muscle! Thank you, Jarvis, for putting in all your hard work to help others achieve their goals!” 

Healthy employees mean productive employees. Productive employees improve the retention of employees. There are so many ways companies can help their employees can remain healthy and happy during these difficult times. 

Cory Arcarese is owner of CArc Enterprises and an adviser with the Pikes Peak Small Business Development Center.