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Build awareness

Build awareness around social well-being.


Through communications and resources, employers can build awareness around social well-being and its benefits. First, address the elements that make up a culture of health, such as communication, executive leadership, external community connections and altruism, and proper policies and procedures.

We want employees to bring their “whole selves” to work and to perform at the highest level. According to Forbes, disengaged employees can cost U.S. companies up to $550 billion per year. Highly engaged teams show 20% greater profitability, and employees who feel their voices heard are 4.6 times more likely to feel empowered to perform their best work.

To support employees in being their best, employers who create a supportive, caring environment that encourages relationship building can foster motivation, commitment, resilience, and adaptability to change. This allows for more focus on the priorities of the business.

It is important for employees to have strong, positive relationships in their lives. Poor social relationships lead to a 29% increased risk for coronary heart disease and 32% increased risk of stroke, along with a 26% increased likelihood of early death associated with loneliness. Something as simple as having a "best friend at work" can help them feel seven times happier and healthier. Investing in relationship building activities at work has huge returns

Increase awareness of the importance of social connections through education and social activities. Promote social fitness by offering opportunities and programs that promote socialization such as a new hire buddy program, mentoring programs, team building, event participation, and more.

Invite inspired and well-connected individuals to become champions for well-being in the organization—provide training and special support to enable them to be a resource for other employees in the organization.

Provide important resources for individuals experiencing loneliness or lack of social support. 

Share internal resources such as employee assistance programs (EAP), carrier resources, or vendor partner resources. Utilize a cultural enhancement campaign or develop a communication strategy to educate employees about social well-being.

Host and promote community activities for employees to get involved.  

Blood drive 

  • Participate in blood drives, either employer-sponsored or as an individual participant. Employers can create share back opportunities on a dedicated intranet page or social media application for employees to post photos about their involvement or donor support.

  • Hosting a blood drive | Red Cross

Farmer’s markets

  • Employers can compile a list of local farmers' markets in their communities and encourage employees to attend. 

5k/10k/marathon events

  • Compile a list of local races (5k, 10k, half, and marathon) and encourage employees to attend.

  • Don’t enjoy running? Employers can offer a healthy selfie challenge, where employees can participate in a healthy activity and capture a photo of him/herself and post it on company social media or dedicated intranet page.  

Sponsor opportunities for physical activity 

  • Offer sports teams or leagues for employees to join and play after work or weekend games.

  • Create informal midday walking groups for employees to be active during breaks and lunch hours.  

Share volunteer and fundraising opportunities

Create intellectual gatherings for employees to critically think about stimulating topics in the company of others  

  • Facilitate a book club and choose books on a variety of relevant topics to your employee population to stimulate critical thinking and connection

  • Create “lending libraries” for colleagues and encourage others to share their favorites with others  

  • Host “Coffee & Conversation” virtual discussions for employees to casually socialize while working remotely. This can help bring back “breakroom culture” and mingling among office workers. 

Recognize employees for their hard work, accomplishments, and special occasions

  • Celebrate birthdays, service anniversaries, and other important events.

  • Recognize promotions and offer praise for jobs well done. 

Invite inspired and well-connected individuals to become champions for well-being in the organization—provide training and special support to enable them to be a resource for other employees in the organization.

Social well-being playbook steps