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Blog/April 11, 2012

Create a Culture of Wellness

Health and wellness is a hot topic for many companies that are trying to lower rising health care costs while at the same time improve employee health and well-being. A healthy and happy workforce usually translates into fewer injuries, reduced absenteeism, higher retention rates and increased productivity, which in turn helps the company’s bottom line. One thing that an organization can do to promote healthy lifestyles for its employees is to create a workplace wellness program and embed it into the company culture.

I recently had the pleasure to speak with Diana Canzona-Hindman, Human Resource Advisor at PCL Construction Enterprises, Inc., who led such an effort at PCL. As a leader in buildings, civil infrastructure and heavy industrial markets, PCL is employee owned and has an annual construction volume of more than $5 billion. The company has been recognized by FORTUNE Magazine as one of the 100 Best Places to Work for six years in a row. PCL’s employee-owned structure, wellness initiatives, philanthropic efforts and training programs all contributed to this milestone achievement.

I asked Diana what the motivation was to integrate wellness into PCL’s culture. Her response was, “People are the real motivation; they are our biggest asset. We truly believe that at PCL and we are committed to their overall health, safety and well-being. We try to accomplish this through excellent medical, dental and vision plans, onsite health screenings, on-going wellness education and awareness, work-life balance options and a comprehensive safety program.”

In addition, she noted that PCL’s “culture of wellness embraces the entire person which has been a huge success factor. Our wellness initiatives include the body, mind and spirit – the whole person. And it looks to that whole person’s life, not just at work, but at home, their quiet time, their own self, and their community. If your philosophy includes the whole person, at some point, they will make wellness a priority for themselves.”

Some, but certainly not all, of PCL’s wellness offerings include:

  • Annual health screenings for all employees and spouses, paid for by PCL
  • Tobacco cessation-related treatments covered 100%
  • Exercise reimbursement for employees who regularly work out at a gym or fitness center
  • Social events at all districts (such as picnics, golf tournaments, etc.)
  • Financial fitness seminars and classes
  • Vending machines that include healthy options as recommended by a hired nutritionist

PCL wants a culture of wellness that is just like its safety culture, and part of its employees everyday thought process.

What is your company doing to encourage a culture of wellness?

(Note: if you would like to read this entire interview, please click here.)

Want to know more?