Virtual Employee Wellness Programs and Ideas for Remote Teams That Actually Work
Find resources to help set up wellness activities and wellness programs for your virtual office.
After adjusting to the virtual office environment to deal with the coronavirus pandemic, it is now more important than ever to establish lasting and effective virtual employee wellness programs for your remote teams. Luckily, there are many resources available for managers (and all employees alike) to start wellness activities for any virtual office set up.
Wellness programs and mental health resources for the virtual office set up are in higher demand than ever before. Google search data shows that searches for mental health services and wellness resources across the board are at 5-year highs. Luckily, both the private and public sectors have responded to meet the needs of virtual teams looking to improve the mental health, physical health and general wellness of their remote employees.
In this article you will find wellness activities and ideas that will benefit any remote team, regardless of size or sector. This article will further help connect you to resources from nationwide nonprofit organizations and government agencies with detailed information on how to appropriately set up an effective virtual employee wellness program for your online office set up.
FREE WELLNESS ACTIVITIES FOR VIRTUAL EMPLOYEES
Effective mental and physical health activities for remote teams don’t necessarily have to cost any money at all.
An activity as simple as taking a walk can do wonders for your team. According to the Mayo Clinic, walking has myriad health benefits that contribute to better physical—and mental—health outcomes. Studies show that “regular brisk walking” can improve cardiovascular fitness, as well as mood, cognition, memory and sleep. Walking further can help prevent or manage more serious medical conditions such as heart disease.
If you are setting up a wellness program or running a physical health competition at work, add a reward for recorded walking times. Consider giving your virtual team some time throughout the week designated for walking. This only has to be 30-45 minutes at a time.
YouTube also offers a limitless supply of great resources for mental health and physical wellness activities, most of which are completely free.
An increasingly popular wellness activity that contributes to fitness and mental equanimity, yoga occupies a large corner of the YouTube community. There are countless experienced yoga instructors who offer free yoga lessons, sometimes on a daily basis.
Yoga YouTubers make videos for students across all skill levels and physical abilities, from experienced yoga students to people rolling out a yoga mat for the very first time.
There are many free instructor-led exercises classes on YouTube, as well. Because of the near-limitless library of videos hosted on YouTube, users can find exercise videos that exactly fit their needs. Whether you don’t have any exercise gear, you have limited mobility or you’re looking to take your fitness to the next level with high intensity interval training, there are scores of professional exercise YouTubers making videos for you.
In addition to exercise videos, YouTube also offers plenty of great and free videos that address mental health.
For one, YouTube offers a gateway into a limitless number of interesting hobbies, including (but certainly not limited to) baking, crocheting, homebrewing, bird watching and gaming.
Several studies have shown that individuals with identified hobbies are less likely to suffer from stress. Thankfully, YouTube has made diving into a new hobby easier than ever.
Baking is a surprisingly easy (and cheap) hobby to pick up, and there are great and fun YouTubers solely dedicated to teaching newcomers the basics of baking. While you’re in the kitchen, consider improving your cooking skills with YouTube’s incredible home cooks.
Whatever you choose, hobbies can improve your mental well being. Providing a curated list of hobbyist videos for your remote team will go a long way in improving wellness and mental health!
BOOK AN ONLINE WELLNESS EVENT FOR YOUR ONLINE TEAM
Creating virtual employee wellness programs calls for solutions specifically geared towards online offices, and there are many companies that offer business solutions for remote teams. This, of course, extends into wellness activities for virtual employees.
Live virtual event entertainment company Unboxed Experiences offers a special wellness product for virtual teams called the Tea & Mindfulness Experience. Available for remote teams across the U.S., this virtual event from Unboxed Experiences is an innovative option for managers searching for virtual team wellness programs.
The Tea & Mindfulness Experience is a virtual retreat for online teams that is designed to refresh and refocus remote employees. During this event, one of Unboxed Experiences’ live event hosts teaches guests to brew internationally-sourced teas and guides them on mindfulness and meditation exercises designed to be enjoyed from the comforts of home.
This curated event from Unboxed Experiences mimics a Zen-like retreat for virtual teams. Throughout the event, participants will be led through exercises that refresh and clear the mind. One of these exercises during the Tea & Mindfulness Experience is a guided mindful tea tasting, where guests learn to fully immerse themselves in the tea tasting experience by engaging all five senses at once.
The Tea & Mindfulness Experience is an especially appealing wellness activity for virtual teams partially because of the seamless logistics of Unboxed Experiences’ events. One of the company’s virtual event planners will work with your organization to plan the best wellness event to suit your team’s needs. Unboxed Experiences then ships all of the tasting kits to your guests, allowing your remote team to enjoy this refreshing virtual event from their own home, no matter where they live nationwide.
ESTABLISH A VIRTUAL EMPLOYEE WELLNESS PROGRAM
Employee wellness programs are common aspects of most traditional office work environments, but what about wellness programs in the digital space?
It is good news that wellness programs can be implemented with ease and efficiency in the virtual office environment, and there are many resources available to managers looking to start their own program.
Virtual event company Unboxed Experiences can work with any organization with remote team members to set up recurring wellness events. These can include the previously mentioned Tea & Mindfulness Experience, which is a relaxing and calming event during any part of the year.
But Unboxed Experiences also runs events like the Beer Making Experience, which teaches team members a new homebrew hobby. Like we covered above, hobbies can effectively reduce stress, so running events like the Beer Making Experience can actually go a long way in establishing a productive wellness program in your digital office space.
Other companies can provide corporate wellness solutions entirely from a smartphone. Ginger is a mental health care and wellness services provider, with access to a menu of services for corporate clients.
At Ginger, companies can set up access to behavioral health coaching, therapy, psychiatry and self-care resources, all in the digital space. These services are often available 24/7 and are provided in Spanish, as well as for younger dependents.
Companies like Unboxed Experiences and Ginger specifically serve virtual teams, but many more resources are available to managers looking to establish wellness programs for their workforce.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control, the national public health agency for the U.S., has a list of local available wellness resources. This database includes contact information, data. Pamphlets and other helpful information, oftentimes localized by state. The CDC further has guided recommendations for workplaces looking to establish employee wellness programs, and those resources can be found here.
Nationwide nonprofit organizations further offer helpful wellness program resources. The Society for Human Resource Management, a professional human resources membership association, hosts valuable wellness program research and information on its website. The organization is a good place to turn to for the very first steps in establishing a virtual employee wellness program.
To plan an unforgettable online event with your team or clients, contact Unboxed Experiences. We have more than a decade of combined experience running unique events that combine hands-on elements, customizable kits, charismatic and knowledgeable live event hosts and unmatched customer service.