Even if it hasn’t quite hit you yet this year, you know it’s coming.
The weather’s getting cold again, so your nose will run, your throat will itch, and you’ll cough so often that your coworkers will be tempted to throw office supplies at you.
That seasonal cold is slowly coming for you and all your employees, cubicle by cubicle.
Of course, it’s inevitable that people won’t always be healthy, especially at this time of year. But, for the millennial generation, the idea of health has expanded far beyond just avoiding illness. It takes much more to ‘be healthy’ than simply dodging the common cold. Millennials are serious about health and wellness. Compared to generations before us, we eat healthier, smoke less, and exercise more.
That’s understandable considering how much more we know about what’s bad for you, and how much easier it is to take care of our bodies. For instance, I don’t have to risk catching that dreaded cold running in the rain when I’ve got a free gym available in my office building. I don’t have to make frequent stops at the store, where the ice cream beckons suggestively from the freezer aisle; I just order what I need, delivered right to my door. And I don’t even have to remember to order more when I run out – hello, subscription meal services!
It’s also no surprise considering how in-touch everyone is. When everyone you’ve ever met is going to see that picture you shared on social media, don’t you want to look your absolute best in it? And if mashing up one of those avocados you’ve just received in your grocery shipment and rubbing it all over your face might help, what do you have to lose, right?
But millennials don’t just stop at caring for their bodies. We also recognize the importance of a sound mind. When you think about it, that’s not shocking either. We’ve grown up in an age of constant stimulation, so taking some time out is needed more than ever. In fact, millennials are widely regarded as the most stressed generation and spend nearly 20 percent of their lives stressed out. Millennials looking to cope are most likely a big part of the reason activities like meditation and yoga have become so mainstream.
Health consciousness is embedded into the millennial experience, so it’s important to consider when planning your business strategy. Here are some related tips you can use depending on how you want to appeal to the millennial crowd:
If you want to attract millennial talent, there are some simple ways to incorporate wellness into your workspace. That free, on-site fitness center I mentioned? A big perk for millennials! Even offering a gym membership could do the trick. The same goes for an available quiet space for mindfulness and meditation. I love the healthy snack options we have in our office kitchen, and I know my coworkers rely on the supply of cold, filtered water to stay hydrated. But health initiatives shouldn’t just stop at the office door. Do employees have access to a place they can comfortably spend their lunch hour outdoors or taking a rejuvenating walk? Getting in that exercise and sunshine does wonders for your overall health!
Wellness should not merely be defined by a list of policies in a handbook; it must permeate your company culture to really resonate with millennials. Do you encourage employees to use sick days for mental health? The attitudes projected toward mental health through your benefits can say a lot about a company. How else do you incorporate wellness into your culture? What charities and events do you support? A friend of mine recently started a challenge with her team and is working to get ten thousand steps in each day. Their Fitbits are connected to a database that stores all the info, and points and prizes are awarded to high performing teams. Team fitness challenges can be a fun way to stay healthy and bond with your coworkers.
We know that millennials make up a big part of the workforce, but we can’t forget that they are a huge group of consumers, too. That means we can’t ignore wellness when creating products that we want millennials to use. Millennials are an informed, concerned generation and won’t be fooled when it comes to what is and isn’t healthy. Remaining transparent when it comes to what is in your product is essential in gaining a millennial following. Millennials also love to share, as is evidenced by the success of group fitness classes like Orange Theory and personal fitness technology like the Fitbit. We even expect to stay healthy to be an exciting, interactive experience.
Want some more ideas on how you can incorporate wellness into your business to attract, retain, and engage millennials?
Check out this Choose Your Own Adventure story!