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A Culture of Wellness and Leadership Buy-In

It is no secret that many workplace wellness programs struggle with engagement. A step in the right direction to increase engagement is to create an organizational culture that supports well-being. Creating that culture is much more feasible when you have committed and aligned leadership. As noted in the first of WELCOA’s 7 Benchmarks, having leaders that are deeply committed to the wellness of employees as well as their own wellness is an important piece of the puzzle. The part that not everybody understands is that leadership applies to more than just the senior level of a company. Committed and aligned leadership is attained when all levels, from the c-suite, to middle management, to key activators are included.

Laura Putnam, founder and CEO of Motion Infusion and author of Workplace Wellness That Works, writes in her LinkedIn Article Culture Deep Dive #2: Activate Leaders, Especially Managers, “while senior leaders set the tone, another ‘inconvenient truth’ is that it’s largely the manager who effectively gives permission (or doesn’t) to their team members to engage with well-being.” She goes on to say that, “according to Gallup, the manager alone likely accounts for 70% of the variance in their team members’ engagement with both their work and well-being.”

In an article she wrote for Human Resource Executive, 4 Proven Ways to Engage Managers in Wellbeing, Laura mentions that managers are “the ones who are best positioned to act as ‘multipliers’, or catalysts, to move a population toward enhanced health and well-being.” She goes on to provide her top four ways to activate managers in the organization to become multipliers:

  1. Make the case for wellbeing in a language that resonates for managers.
  2. Help managers see well-being in a broader sense, not just the traditional nutrition and exercise.
  3. Help managers understand why they are so uniquely positioned to persuade or dissuade better well-being at work.
  4. Give managers doable and actionable ways to make a difference, such as:
    • Do – lead by example
    • Speak – talk about well-being to team members
    • Create – devise simple team-based rituals that help to enhance quality of life for team members

Laura will be diving deeper into including activators into this mix during her upcoming WELCOA Members only webinar, Influencers & Activators for Wellness, December 11, 2019. She and her guests will explore two case studies to take a look at how you can Activate the Influencers and then how you can Empower the Activators (as in, those who are activating these key influencers).

Laura Putnam
ABOUT Laura Putnam, MA // CEO • Motion Infusion

Laura Putnam is the award-winning author of the #1 Amazon Hot New Release in HR and Personnel Management book, Workplace Wellness That Works, and CEO/founder of Motion Infusion, a leading provider of well-being and human performance services. Her work has been covered by MSNBC, The New York Times, US News & World Report, Entrepreneur, Business Insider, and NPR.


Interested in this and many more webinars and courses from subject matter experts around the nation?