A Mission to Improve Employee Health through a Mind, Body and Soul Challenge
We are passionate about our people at Voyant. They aren’t just people who work here — they are our friends and family away from home, and we want to see them thrive in all areas of their lives.
We regularly communicate with our staff in open forums to get an understanding of what helps our teammates feel happy and healthy. We gauge their happiness, satisfaction, wellness, personal growth, work relationships and business alignment. After surveying our team, we put a plan in place to improve our employee wellness.
“Employee Wellness” in our world broke down into three areas: body, mind and soul. Our mission included ways to improve the team’s personal health as well as helping with stress management.
One Body. One Mind. One Soul. One Voyant.
How did we create something that would help our team feel better holistically?
We sought to challenge staff to care for themselves in such a way that they not only felt better about their wellness at work, but also outside of work. To bring this mission out, we created our first ever Voyant Employee Wellness Challenge — a three part, 10-week program that encouraged wellness in body, mind and soul.
The challenge was optional for all staff, but was highly encouraged by promising a free PTO day for completing the challenge in full. Additionally, we offered a cash prize for the top three competitors. The Voyant team is located in three main offices and has multiple remote workers across the United States, India, Mexico and Brazil. This meant we needed to find a way to spread wellness and encourage teamwork with our offices and remote locations.
Here’s how this challenge broke down:
Read or Listen
We asked our staff to read or listen to the book The Willpower Instinct by Kelly McGonigal, Ph.D. The book was recommended for those who wanted to learn how to challenge their willpower in areas of health, career and life in general.
Nourish Your Body
In this part of the challenge, we scoured various health articles to find a list of foods and drinks that were considered “unhealthy” to consume on a regular basis. We asked our team to eliminate two of these items for the duration of the challenge. Some examples of these unhealthy foods were: soda, energy drinks, candy, fast food and fried foods.
Get up & Get Movin’
A body, mind and soul challenge isn’t complete without a fitness component. In this part of the challenge, we not only offered a cash prize to the top three competitors, but we encouraged the team to workout together in order to earn extra points. We asked our team to work out for at least 30 minutes, three times a week. Each minute of exercise equaled one point, and by working out with a coworker, they received double points. A messaging platform helped staff, especially remote workers who don’t have coworkers local to them, coordinate a time to workout with a coworker located in another timezone. As long as the workout was scheduled ahead of time with a coworker in a different location, it would count toward double points.
Looking at the numbers alone, our overall wellness score increased by nearly 13%. The best part of the challenge was the feedback we received from our participating employees. Some lost up to 50 lbs, while others started sleeping better or felt more focused throughout the day. The challenge brought on a wave of emotions, and we shared them with each other in our communication channel. We used that channel to encourage one another and help hold each other accountable which was a big benefit. Eliminating foods was the hardest piece to the challenge for most, but many said that after the first couple of weeks, they didn’t really miss the junk food as much as they thought.
We are now developing another challenge and hope to complete these at least two times a year. We are looking to change up the challenge details to make sure it’s inclusive, and everyone can participate at least once throughout the year.