The IDEA team is not only setting industry standards with its products and events but also inspiring cutting-edge corporate wellness with its Exercise Your Happiness initiative. The ultimate goal of the initiative is not simply to create a wellness program, but rather to develop an ideal wellness community that revolves around movement, healthy nutrition, positive attitudes and thoughts, and a supportive environment.
A New Beginning
In March 2011, IDEA co-founders Peter and Kathie Davis decided to change their company culture, centering it on the health and happiness of their employees. The first steps were creating a Wellness Committee to champion and enforce the changes and creating a list of core values for the company and individuals to live by. The following IDEALS were born:
Do the Right Thing
Exercise Your Happiness
Learn and Thrive
Set the Standard
Since then, many big changes at the IDEA office have put the company’s wellness at its epicenter. “We wanted to get away from the typical work environment filled with stress, tension and unhealthy habits and replace it with one that fosters all aspects of our employees’ well-being,” said IDEA CEO Peter Davis.
Here are some of the unique changes that have taken place:
- Standup workstations. IDEA tribe members have the option of using Ergotron standup workstations, to combat the adverse effects of sitting all day.
- Healthier snack options. Forget vending machines! The tribe takes advantage of a snack station filled with nuts, granola bars, fresh fruits and other options that are healthier than those in the typical vending machine.
- The Wellness Room. This large room was converted into a community center–style space where employees can work out, socialize, hold meetings and come together for group functions. It is complete with weights, yoga mats, beanbag chairs, a pingpong table and a large-screen TV for watching workout DVDs.
- Lunchtime fitness classes. During the lunch hour, tribe members gather in the Wellness Room to participate in various classes taught by their coworkers. Sessions include meditation, yoga, Pilates, core training and Metabolic Effect. Group runs and walks are scheduled throughout the week.
- Lunch ’n’ Learns. To support the learn-and-thrive portion of the IDEALS, IDEA directors frequently invite guest speakers to talk to the tribe about relevant topics or issues that support company wellness.
Recent IDEA Happenings
Here are some of the guest speakers IDEA has invited and events it has organized to further promote wellness among the IDEA tribe:
- Will Marre: The Happiness Factor. Marre, CEO of ThoughtRocket and REALeadership Alliance, was invited to speak to IDEA employees three times to teach them how to promote and enhance happiness in their everyday lives by making little changes and having a different outlook.
- Steve Snyder: Stress Management. Snyder, co-founder of Live and Learn and expert on Accelerated Learning and Personal Development, visited IDEA to share his techniques for reducing stress, prioritizing, and enhancing focus in the workplace and at home.
- Chiropractor Todd Plutchok: Office Survival. Todd Plutchok, DC, CCWP, with The League Sports Rehab & Chiropractic Clinic, spoke with the group about the adverse outcomes of sitting all day and taught tribe members how to make postural changes by stretching and practicing self myofascial release.
- 5-Week Fall Fitness Challenge. The Challenges and Events Committee put on a 5-week challenge for tribe members to test their fitness skills, encourage healthy habits and motivate employees to inspire others in their lives to exercise.
- Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk. The tribe supported breast cancer awareness by raising money for the American Breast Cancer Society and participating in a 5K to help women and families affected by the disease.
- Chelsea’s Run. Members of the tribe gathered on a sunny Saturday morning to walk or run a 5K in remembrance of local teen Chelsea King, whose life was taken too early.
The Wellness Committee
How does IDEA plan and run its different wellness programs? With the help of the Wellness Committee, which is made up of passionate team members who generate innovative and fun ways to keep the tribe happy and active! The group meets biweekly to plan events, discuss changes, bring up concerns and keep the wellness vision growing.
There are five subcommittees:
- Special Projects Committee. This group heads up projects by making timelines and implementing all of the phases of these projects.
- Tracking Committee. Members of this subcommittee track and document items such as company happiness, wellness and activities in order to identify highlights and places for improvement. A yearly happiness survey gauges how the tribe is feeling.
- Participation and Awareness Committee. Members boost participation in the Wellness Committee and in tribe activities. They also look for ways to improve the wellness program, and bring these to the attention of the Wellness Committee.
- Challenges and Events Committee. This subcommittee designs participatory challenges for the tribe, finds local events to support, and plans group outings.
- Celebration and Recognitions Committee. This group ensures that all special events—including birthdays, holidays and other special occasions—are recognized. Committee members make all occasions special by granting birthday wishes, making treats and decorating around the office.