Is a healthy workplace the forgotten factor in leadership?

by L&D05 May 2016
Leaders are often under-nourished, exhausted and overweight, yet they expect employees to be healthy, energetic and engaged, said Nikki Fogden-Moore, lifestyle coach, speaker and author of the new book,Vitality.

Ultimately, leadership is about leading by example and creating an authentic culture where there is a true blend of professional and personal accountability, she said.

“It is just too expensive not to make a change and review your own personal performance as a leader,” said Fogden-Moore.

“Worksafe Australia stated that burnout from too much work contributes to a $20 billion "stress bill" each year, so the cost of absenteeism, illness and lack of productivity for companies can be crippling in the long run.
“If you haven’t put yourself at the top of the list for a vitality overhaul and feel that the 'healthy' element may be eluding you - then maybe it’s time you looked in the proverbial mirror and asked yourself these five basic questions.”
Do you know your why and your culture?  
What kind of culture do you really want to create for yourself and your company? Why is a healthy workplace important to you?If you can’t articulate to your team and your company why they need to look after their health and wellbeing, and show them the path yourself, how can you expect them to follow?
Are you living by old rules and not adopting a new strategy for health and wellbeing?
What may have worked for you in your 20’s most probably does not fit the busy life you have now. As responsibilities, schedules and weekly demands change, so too must your approach to health and wellbeing. This could involve ensuring walk and talks replace hour long meetings, encouraging your staff to leave their desks for a lunch break where possible and be outside for fresh air or fitness.
Is your current corporate wellbeing plan really relevant?
Is that company health program getting you and your team a return on investment and increasing engagement, performance and productivity - or is it just ticking the health and safety box and not tailored enough to truly fit your industry and operational landscape.
Are you keeping it simple or getting tangled up in big plans and dramatic statements?
Leading with vitality means you balance your work and your well-being without turning your life upside down and making massive marathon goals you won’t complete. Be smart. Running a business and balancing home life is exhausting, so bring harmony and well-being in as a focus, not just hard core training and strict fitness regimes you cannot sustain. This means blending a balance of cardio exercise, time for rest and relaxation away from computers and devices, not over-booking your agenda with meetings and making time for creative planning and strategy without distractions.
Are you applying the fresh air/fresh food philosophy?
Integrate small regular amounts of exercise into your day, choose healthy food you enjoy and ensure your commitment to consciously being your personal best is reflected within your organisation just as much as on the weekends.
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