Returning to Work After COVID-19: 5 Questions to Ask and Answer Before You Reopen

Reengagement customers after COVID

It’s been months since the COVID-19 pandemic began to spark shelter-in-place regulations and business closures across the U.S. Now, those restrictions are starting to let up and we’re all eager to get back to normal—especially business owners. Unfortunately, it won’t be as easy as just opening your doors.  There are a few things you’ll need to consider in order to make your reopen a success.

1. What is the best strategy for reopening?

How you reopen is just as important as when. Take the time to personalize your reopening strategy with ideas and practices that fit your unique culture.

Will your full staff return or will some employees continue to work remotely? Do seating arrangements need to change to maintain social distancing? How can you accommodate employees who are wary of taking public transportation or may not know what to do about childcare?

In some cases it will be best to give employees the option to remain remote. Chances are, you’re going to need to be open and flexible, especially early on.

2.  How have we made things safer for employees and customers?

Before you reopen, you’ll want to have the office thoroughly cleaned, especially the common areas, bathrooms and door handles. Stock up on hand sanitizers and be sure you have more than enough antibacterial soaps and cleansers for the days ahead.

You might even consider implementing new guidelines, such as one-way hallways with signage throughout the office to reinforce new policies.

Whatever you decide, communication is key. Let employees know what’s been done to prepare for their return and what you expect from all of them. The same goes for a customer facing business. Communicate what customers can expect when they return to your boutique, salon or gym so that they can feel safe doing so. If you really want to make an impact, send an update letter to their homes and include a little personalized gift.

TIP: Give people a chance to voice concerns. Try a digital survey or virtual Town Hall for employees, or a social media Q&A for customers.

3. What should the first week back look like?

Don’t attempt to get straight to business. Instead, set up something to welcome your employees back. Maybe you arrange a fun activity to give people time to catch up. Maybe you greet them with gift bags, filled with personalized items like hand sanitizers and desk accessories. You might even modify the workday to include wellness activities that help ease anxiety. In the wake of the pandemic, and the many lifestyle changes it’s caused, they’ll appreciate you making the effort to boost team morale and keep spirits high.

The same goes for customers who come into your establishment. Give them something special to show you missed them and appreciate them.

4. What changes do we need to make to our business model?

As you probably expect, opening your doors and getting back to normal are not one and the same. The return to normalcy may actually be slow. Figure out ahead of time how you should operate moving forward. 

Consider whether or not remote work can be a permanent change in your office. How will your meetings be held? Maybe you relied heavily on in-person interactions and are discovering that you need to ramp up your virtual offerings. That’s ok! This is the perfect opportunity to change.

If you’re a primarily customer facing business, consider whether you change the way you schedule appointments, or limit the number of people allowed inside at one time. Can you still accept walk-ins? Do you need to modify your return policy? Will you offer curbside pickup or delivery options?

Look to see how you can make changes that not only keep customers and employees safer, but work to make their lives easier during this time. You can thrive by keeping their needs and concerns at the forefront of your decision-making.

5. How are we planning to publicize our opening?

In office settings, you may not need to do anything at all—but when reopening a brick and mortar business, publicizing is key. You can’t simply open the doors and expect customers to come.

You may not be able to rely on the same methods you used before COVID-19. You probably won’t even be able to throw a large customer event in your storefront. What you can do, however, is reach out to your customers via email and direct mail. Use online avenues and social media to connect with people in your surrounding area, then hold a virtual grand reopening event walking everyone through some of the changes you’ve made. You can also still rely on promotional gifts to help you get your message out.

Overall, treat your re-opening like a grand opening!

5 Promotional Products for Workplace Wellness

Workplace wellness

As summer winds to an end and the days start getting shorter, are you looking out for the wellbeing of your business’s employees? You can help lessen work-related stress, improve productivity, and show appreciation for all that your employees do with a simple gift! Consider promoting workplace wellness with these five customizable promotional products:

1. 25 Oz. Tritan Super Grip Bottle

Remind your employees of the value of staying hydrated every day with this convenient, custom-imprint water bottle in four colors. Drinking enough water throughout the day can energize you, improve your mood, and prevent headaches!

2. Halcyon Spinner Pen

Research shows that fidgeting can actually improve focus by increasing the levels of neurotransmitters in the brain that control focus and attention. Offer your employees a pen that does twice the work keeping them focused: use it for taking notes or fidgeting as needed! Additionally, you can add a custom imprint in full color to perfectly capture your logo.

3. Folding Headphones

Just like fidgeting, in certain circumstances listening to music can improve productivity and focus. When doing repetitive work, listening to music tends to help people perform faster and with fewer errors. It also has the benefit of blocking out noisy environments and boosting your mood during a stressful day. A pair of comfortable headphones are the perfect gift for busy employees!

4. Round Massage Ball

Fight off back pain and tension headaches with the use of a massage ball! Especially when working in an office, this is a great way to keep aches and pains from impacting your day. Either keep it on hand in the office or keep it at home so you can unwind after a long day.

5. Activity Tracker Wristband

Encourage your team to stay active all the time with this stylish activity tracker wristband! Nothing is better for productivity than a walk or jog on your lunch break and aiming to stay healthy during and outside of work!

For more ideas on how to appreciate your employees and promote workplace wellness, explore Myron’s expansive catalog of quality, personalized products!

Promote Employee Health & Wellness in Your Workplace

 

Whether you’re a manager trying to embrace a “whole person” philosophy of coaching and mentoring your reports, a business owner striving for a healthier workforce or an HR leader looking for ways to make employee wellness a reality, you’ve probably wondered about the most effective, practical, and affordable ways to promote health and wellbeing in your office.

While some companies get lucky with exercise-obsessed, health-conscious employees (plus the resources to include gym memberships, fitness reimbursement, and other generous employee wellness investments in their benefits package), most organizations are trying to find ways to promote wellness without breaking the bank. Through our work with a wide range of clients at Myron, we have discovered some practical ways to use cultural factors, employee encouragement, thoughtful promotional products and other small investments to drive workplace wellness.

Below you’ll find our four favorite ideas for promoting wellness in the office, and all the tips, tricks, and promotional product recommendations you need to make these strategies a reality.

1. Help Employees Remember to Stay Healthy

If you’re working to encourage health and wellness in your workplace, there’s an all-too-common practice that you’ll want to eliminate from your company: employees skipping or forgetting medications, foregoing exercise, or losing track of personal wellness because of the demands of the workday.

You can address the simple problem of employees forgetting or de-prioritizing their health by gifting items like a wellness journal or a branded pill box to send a clear message that you want employees to prioritize their health on a daily basis.

Encourage managers to feature these items on their own desks and give their teams a short talk about the importance of daily health and wellness practices. You could even offer employees the chance to sign up for an optional e-mail alert each day, reminding them to take their medications, do some stretching, or participate in daily health practices that are important to them.

Problem: Employees de-prioritize exercise and personal care due to workday demands.
Solution: Daily health reminders and managerial examples.

2. Keep Your Team Properly Fueled & Hydrated

No matter what steps employees take in their personal lives to stay healthy, their wellness, fitness, and job performance will all suffer if they’re not eating healthily and drinking plenty of water throughout the workday.

If you see your employees yawning frequently or complaining about headaches and indigestion, or if a quick glance around the desks in your office reveals plenty of junk food and coffee or soda but little to no healthy foods or water, you may have a problem with nutrition and hydration in your workplace.

One way to address this head on is to use whatever resources you have to increase employee’s access to drinking water and healthy snacks throughout your office. If you’re already investing in snacks and food for employees, use that money for the healthiest options possible. If any parts of your office space lack convenient access to cool, drinkable water, or if your water cooler is perpetually running low, make the changes necessary so that everyone stays hydrated.

Nutrition and hydration are also another key area where managers can lead by example. If your employees see you carrying a branded water bottle to meetings, ordering healthy foods for team or client meals, and choosing healthier snacks throughout your workday, they will start to see nutrition and hydration as a key part of how you do business.

Problem: Employees aren’t staying properly hydrated or eating healthily.
Solution: Healthy food, ample drinking water and branded water bottles provided by the company.

3. Encourage Person-Powered Commuting

Every day, the vast majority of American workers have one thing in common: they commute. And while the word “commute” may carry negative connotations of sitting miserably in traffic or jockeying for position in a crowded bus or subway, it can also represent a key opportunity for exercise.

The members of your team who are currently choosing to bike, walk, or run to work each day are key influencers in your office: if you can celebrate their healthy choices and make it easier for others to follow suit, you will increase the overall wellness of your organization.

One popular program to encourage commuting by bike or foot is to offer a monthly reimbursement for those commuters. You could also celebrate their accomplishments in your regular e-mails or all-hands meetings, maybe even by playfully framing the impressive mileage your cyclists, walkers, and runners are accumulating (“this quarter, Marcus completed the equivalent of the Tour de France!”, “by the end of the year, Sharon will have walked the length of the entire Pacific Crest Trail!”).

Person-powered commuters often face genuine safety risks when they must commute in the dark, which can sometimes be inevitable, especially in winter months, so one way to encourage this practice is to give custom reflective safety items as gifts to cyclists, walkers, and runners in your office.

Problem: Employees can’t find time to get exercise.
Solution: Bike and foot commuters recognized, encouraged and equipped.

4. Create a Culture of Exercise

While everyone at your company will have their own personal preferences for fitness activities, it is possible to create a culture in which a passion for exercise and all of the benefits it brings to personal wellness is shared by your entire team.

If you have team members who share a love of working out, running, rock climbing, spin class, or any other fitness activity, you could encourage them to schedule syncs or one-on-ones at the gym. If your building features showers, you could start offering a towel service and supplying toiletries to make it more convenient for your employees to clean up after a pre-work or midday work out.

You could also create a channel on your internal chat program for employees to discuss fitness, encourage each other towards goals, and invite one another to exercise together. At meetings or in company-wide e-mails, you can celebrate and congratulate employees who meet personal fitness goals or who enter races, walks, or fun runs (maybe you could even offer to reimburse their entry fees or make contributions to the charities their races support).

Finally, if you’re going to invest in branded apparel for your company, consider choosing something more athletic and workout-friendly than the generic company sweatshirt or fleece. Giving your workforce branded athletic apparel that they can wear out on runs or workouts will send a clear message that you support their health, and it may also provide some free publicity as other health-conscious people in your community take note and wonder what it would be like to work for someone who invests in their employees’ health and wellness.

Problem: Fitness is not an employee priority, or employees can’t fit their workouts into their workdays.
Solution: Individual fitness goals supported and celebrated. Group fitness opportunities encouraged.

Cutting-Edge Benefits That Give You An Edge

With the current unemployment rate hovering at just under 5%, it’s never been more important to know how to attract—and keep—top talent. Which brings up a good question: Have you taken a good look at your benefits package lately?

Nearly 3 in 5 people say that they scrutinize a company’s perks package when deciding whether to accept a job. Dangling desirable, in-demand extras can give you that all-important edge over the competition.

So, what, exactly, are your prime candidates hunting for? According to a survey by employer-review site Glassdoor, the top five perks are healthcare insurance (40%), paid time off (37%), performance-based bonuses (35%), paid sick days (32%) and a 401(k) plan, retirement plan and/or pension (31%). But you’ll want to go beyond these old-school offerings to attract attention, especially from young candidates. The following bells and whistles are growing in popularity:

Paid maternity and paternity leave: This benefit is especially attractive to younger employees, who often feel pressed to return to work quickly after welcoming a new child. Even if you can’t afford to foot the bill for an extended leave, offering flexible days and/or hours for several months or the first year will yield some serious goodwill. 

Workplace wellness programs: Yoga in the conference room? Why not? Exercise classes and employee health fairs show workers you care, for relatively little outlay. Bonus: A health-conscious atmosphere may result in fewer employee illnesses and absences.

Telecommuting options: Are there certain positions within your organization that don’t require being onsite at all times? Drawing up a telecommuting schedule that features, say, 1 work-from-home day a week can improve employees’ quality of life. It’s also a tantalizing benefit to dangle in front of a candidate who’s on the fence.

Mobile workstations: When the weather is nice, employees don’t always want to be chained to their desks. If yours is an office environment, consider providing a set number of laptops and allowing staffers to work on a patio or another outdoor spot when they desire.

Concierge service: Everyone’s looking to save time these days. Having someone on-site who can help employees by dropping off their cars for repairs or even planning their family parties makes workers’ lives much easier. Even if you can’t afford a full-time employee assistant, there are ways to bring some similar perks to the workplace. Consider arranging for pick-up and drop-off of staffers’ dry cleaning, for instance, or giving workers an opportunity to order precooked dinners from a meal service to take home.

Discounts on popular goods: Work with area businesses to offer discounts on gym memberships, dining, haircuts, and other services. Retailers may jump at the chance to increase their customer base, and it won’t cost your company a dime.

Retirement and financial education: Currently, 40% of all workers say that their employer offers them no retirement and financial guidance. That’s a shame, since employees with no workplace retirement advice report higher levels of anxiety surrounding the topic. Offer some retirement-planning seminars (perhaps the company that administers your 401 (k) can help) and not only will you benefit, so will your staff. Studies show that on average, employees with access to retirement education at work contribute a little more than 10% of their income toward retirement, versus just 4% for those with no access.

Ready for some even flashier perks? When Careerbuilder.com asked workers what single upgrade would make their job more satisfying, many of the ideas on their wish list were benefits that cost relatively little. They included on-site massages, a no-judgments nap room, a snack cart, and the ability to wear jeans. Ask your staffers what they want, and see where you can compromise. Meeting them partway can go a long way toward a happier, more productive, and more stable workplace.

Tips to declutter your home and office

It’s hard to be productive when your home or office is filled with needless objects. Clutter is distracting, as all the items are competing for your attention and clogging up your view. It can also make it hard to find the papers and objects you need because they get buried. Decluttering your house or office is a big task, especially if you’ve let it get out of hand, but it’s an important step toward regaining your productivity and optimizing your workflow. Follow these steps to clear out your cluttered space, and invest in a few personalized products to keep your desk clean as a whistle.

Take everything out
If you try to declutter with a subtractive method – taking one thing out at a time – you probably won’t get very far. Instead, take the opposite approach. Clear everything off your desk and out of any drawers. Store it all in a big box while you work. This will give you a chance to give your desk and any surface areas a thorough cleaning. When you’re finished, put a few necessary objects back – a few pens, scissors or other objects you use every day. You’ll be amazed at how much is still in the box.

Try the four-box trick
Sort through the objects you have left with the four-box method. You’ll need four containers or bags to section out your cluttered items – one for trash, donations, save and relocate. This method of decluttering is pretty self explanatory, but be careful with your “relocate” box. If too many things are going there, you’ll find yourself with clutter in another part of the house or office. When you’re sorting, be honest with yourself. Only keep things that you absolutely need. Donate duplicate objects and toss anything that’s broken or worn out.

Organize by importance
Once you’ve sorted through all your items, it’s time to replace the things you’ve decided to keep. A good rule when replacing your tools and papers is to organize by importance. The items you use the most should be easily accessible. If you’re always digging for paper clips, store them on top of your desk in a Round Paper Clip Dispenser. If your desk is packed with photos, invest in some Round Paper Clip Dispenser to display around the room. Store items you don’t use as often in bottom drawers or toward the back. This setup will optimize your workflow and help you to stay productive throughout the day.

Developing a healthy workplace for employees

Promoting physical fitness in the office is essential for fostering a healthy environment for all employees. Whether your office is trading donuts for fruit or swapping traditional chairs for exercise balls, there are several innovative improvements that can greatly increase productivity, satisfaction and happiness in the office.

As you begin to encourage physical fitness in the workplace, examine the ways you can best promote healthy lifestyles among employees.

The benefits of a healthy workplace
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, physical activity is crucial for reducing feelings of depression, increasing stamina and decreasing one’s risk for developing cardiovascular disease down the road. Additionally, many organizations have found that by implementing programs that further increase healthy living in the workplace, employees are more likely to respond positively and become more productive.

AccountingWeb reported that companies with similar initiatives reported fewer employee sick days, decreased turnover and improved overall staff attitudes. Employees who participated in programs reported greater energy, elevated mood and increased feelings of happiness.

Small ways to make your office healthier
While some businesses develop programs to help increase awareness for healthy living among employees, others implement small changes throughout the office to further encourage this mindset. The Associated Press reported that a fun and simple way employers can ensure their staff are getting exercise is by allowing them to use exercise balls instead of traditional desk chairs. This small change brings a wealth of benefits to employees, including increased mobility during the day, improved balance and increased muscle toning.

Cheryl Soleway, a physical therapist in Vernon, British Columbia, explained that the exercise balls encouraged people to remain moving while sitting for extended periods of time.

“What we are trying to promote is active sitting versus passive sitting,” Soleway told the AP. “You get a low level of neuromuscular activity – your abdominal and trunk muscles are contracting to some degree. Without that activity, you would fall off.”

Another medical professional, Henry Goitz, the chief of sports medicine at the Medical College of Ohio, added that employers should be sure to impose limits with these sitting surfaces, as balancing for eight to 12 hours on an exercise ball could cause a person to become fatigued. Instead, he recommended sitting on the ball for 20 to 30 minutes at a time.

Some offices have implemented standing desks, which allow employees to conduct business while remaining on their feet. Others have implemented companywide contests to further promote physical fitness, offering promotional products related to worker wellness as prizes for completing certain challenges.

Incentives to encourage healthy living
If you’re interested in adopting similar healthy living contests for employees, consider a challenge that can be easily undertaken by all workers. Some organizations offer predeveloped programs for offices, such as those that ask workers to complete a six-week initiative revolving around a particular physical activity.

As your company begins to look into programs that can help increase fitness in the workplace, consider distributing promotional products that will help their cause. Small items can help show employees that the company values their health and is willing to provide support wherever it can. For a general option that will encourage workers to start drinking more water, consider handing out Customized Sports Bottles that workers can easily transport between locations. Alternatively, if you’re seeking a more specific item that directly relates to your officewide challenge, opt for an item tailored to tracking fitness, such as the Eco Solar Logo Pedometer, which keeps a record of the number of steps a person has taken as well as the number of calories they’ve burned.

Create an employee wellness program

“The bottom line: Every dollar invested in the intervention yielded $6 in health care savings,” explained the Harvard Business Review in an article about wellness programs in the workplace.

The three main benefits of creating an employee wellness program are reducing health care costs for both employers and employees, improving the mental and physical health of employees and enhancing employee satisfaction. World No Tobacco Day falls at the end of May, which can serve as an excellent jumping point for starting an employee wellness program that includes overall healthfulness, from stopping smoking to increasing physical activity.

According to Forbes, four steps will allow for an effective wellness plan. First, employers must figure out what health needs the staff has and how they coincide with company’s culture and operations. This can be done with health risk assessments and surveys. Once the data is collected, determine what wellness initiatives fit with the employees. What benefits would the staff take advantage of? Forbes suggested physical activity be paired with wellness education for full implementation. The third step is communicating the program in an enticing way. Lastly, there must be incentives to garner participation in employee wellness goals.

Incentives
To attract employees to the program in the very beginning, start with promotional giveaways. Distribute stress balls with the company logo on them. To keep with the health theme, consider Doctor Promotional Stress Relievers. Once everyone is aware of the initiative and how it will work, there will need to be more incentives down the road to encourage dedication to positive lifestyle changes. A larger form of motivation would be reduced price gym memberships for employees who commit to the program. In the similar fashion, consider bringing yoga or fitness instructors to the office for a group exercise session.

Specific programs to try

  • Weight loss challenge: A lot of places call these “The Biggest Loser” competitions because of the popular television show but feel free to be more imaginative. Weight can be a sensitive issue for some people so it’s important to keep that in mind. Exact numbers don’t need to be made public. Consider documenting just the percentage of weight lost or keeping the participants anonymous. Find out if employees are more interested in competing as groups or individually. Teams can be divided by departments, in pairs of two or simply in half. Encourage people to participate by handing out Double Wall Custom Acrylic Tumblers. Staying hydrated is crucial to weight loss and now employees can keep a fresh supply of water on their desks at all times.
  • Smoke free initiative: In honor of World No Tobacco day, organize a program to encourage staff to stop smoking cigarettes. This can be done with a combination of education and goal-setting. Gather interested employees for a brief information session. The negative effects of tobacco are well advertised, so it probably isn’t necessary to delve deeply into the subject. Simply remind smokers of the endless benefits to quitting, then present an initiative. Consider setting daily, weekly and monthly goals that have various giveaway prizes.
  • Fitness competition: To get employees exercising more often, raise the stakes with a friendly competition. Create goals for staff to strive for such as consistently working out three days a week or being active for a certain number of hours per week. Another way to compare fitness level is with pedometers. Have every employee keep track of their walking distance every day and give prizes to the winners. A great fitness-oriented giveaway is a 31 oz. Gripper Poly-Clear Sports Bottle. Employees who enjoy their increasingly active lifestyle may be interested in Personalized Champion’s Jump Ropes.

Connect with customers this summer using custom sunscreen products

Memorial Day is barely in the rearview mirror but the whole summer is still to come. As the season progresses, the sun is going to grow closer, then warmer and more powerful as a result. May 27 marked Sunscreen Day, an unofficial holiday that celebrates sun safety. As customers get ready for vacations, day trips to the beach and outdoor sports, they will appreciate sun safety tips along with custom promotional products that will keep their skin pain-free and protect against skin cancer.

Sunscreen
Applying sunscreen regularly can define whether someone goes home from the beach with a blistering burn or pain-free. Sunscreen should be used every day during the summer, even if someone isn’t planning on spending a significant amount of time outside. This is because UV rays can penetrate windows, including car windshields. Sunscreen should be applied 30 minutes before going outside, then reapplied every two hours after. Make sure customers remember that their ears, scalps and the tops of their feet need sunscreen as well. These areas are often overlooked!

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommends using a sunscreen product with a minimum of SPF 15, like the 1 Oz. Customizable Sunscreen Lotion or 1.5 Oz. Promotional Sport Sunscreen with Carabiner for the more active client base. There are also Promotional Sunscreen Lotion Pocket Packs and Personalized Sunscreen Packets. Those products are available in SPF 30 as well.

Further sun protection
It’s also paramount that people use lip balm with SPF during the summer. Lips don’t have any melanin, the component that gives skin pigment, so they are very vulnerable to sunburn. Consider putting a custom slogan on an Easy-Twist Lip Balm (SPF-23) or Flavor Burst Promotional Lip Balm in SPF 15.

Some people like using umbrellas to create their own shade on a sunny day. Put the brand on a Sport Golf Umbrella or a Compact Umbrella with LED Flashlight Swivel Handle that will catch eyes everywhere the customer goes.

There is an increasing emphasis placed on the use of protective clothing when spending time outside. It’s recommended that people completely cover their arms and legs with tightly woven but loose-fitting clothing. A hat with a large brim that shades the face, eyes, ears and neck is a great addition to sun safety as well. Sunglasses should have 100 percent UVA and UVB protection, a factoid that can be shared with a Custom Sun Survival Kit. The combo pack includes a sunglasses case, lens cleaning cloth, bottle of sunscreen and packet of aloe vera gel.

Contests and giveaways for sun protection promotional products
Because these items are based on fun in the sun, try to create contests that focus on summertime outdoor activities. These can either be conducted using the company’s social media platforms or with in-person submissions. Consider “best of” competitions, such as best sunrise picture, best sunset picture and best beach photo. Another category for contests is “the most” photos. For example, customers may compete to fit the most people on a pool raft or eat the most watermelon slices, depending on how the business lays out guidelines. Additionally, it may be fun to ask customers to write sun safety slogans that will be posted on the website to keep with the sunscreen theme.

Consider offering these products on a limited-time basis to new clients and customers during the summer. Advertise the deal on social media so people know that they have to take advantage before the season ends. This is one way to boost mid-year sales so the business transitions to the fall on a solid foundation.

Get the community moving with National Bike Month

National Bike Month was established in 1956 by the League of American Bicyclists to celebrate people who love to bike and entice those who don’t to join the movement. The benefits of biking are many, from financial to environmental to looking at the neighborhood from a new perspective. Try bringing the two-wheeled spirit to the community with organized biking challenges and competitions. If employees aren’t convinced, hit them with some of these facts from the League about how biking makes the world a little better.

  1. Money: Personal costs are cut every which way when someone makes the change from driving to biking. There’s no need to worry about finding parking, paying for parking or coming out of the office to a parking ticket on the windshield. Bikers also buy less fuel and have fewer maintenance issues to pay for. The League of American Bicyclists found that Americans saved more than 4 billion dollars by biking instead of driving in 2012.
  2. Health: The actual figures don’t need to be shared for people to know that obesity is a problem in America. However, employees might be interested to know that data from the League of American Bicyclists showed that 10 miles of biking allows a 180-pound man to burn 400 calories and a 130-pound woman to burn 300 calories. According to the Transportation Research Board, more than 80 percent of bike commuters think their health has improved since switching from other transportation methods. From an employer standpoint, it was reported that employees who regularly ride to work take 15 percent fewer sick days and accomplish more.
  3. Mother Earth: Bicycle commuting reduces air pollution from automobile emissions. According to the League, the atmosphere was saved 13 million pounds of greenhouse gas emissions during the 2012 National Bike Challenge.

Celebrating National Bike Month in the community
Local businesses can promote National Bike Month as encouragement for members of the community to take advantage of public parks and bike trails. It’s the perfect time to renew or garner interest in biking because the weather is warming up and spending time outside is becoming more attractive. Consider handing out sports bottles with the company logo to customers who arrive on bikes as an incentive to switch transportation modes. It may be a good idea to make or buy an outdoor sign that denotes a bike-friendly business. Additionally, consider installing bike racks out front. For people who seem interested in joining the movement, provide maps of nearby bike-friendly areas so they know exactly where to go.

Schools can add to the community celebration by promoting the merits of biking to school. An assembly on bike transportation should include information about safety measures such as helmets and proper footwear as well as the importance of locking bikes up to avoid theft during the school day. Look into distance challenges that will persuade students to choose bikes over busses and cars. Offer prizes like the Promotional Drawstring Bag or the Promotional Microfiber Backpack for the top riders to use while peddling to school.

For businesses that are located in a central or urban area, organize a day for biking to work. If participation is satisfactory, try making biking to work a monthly occurrence. Declare a goal for what percentage of employees will use bikes for transportation. Whenever the company hits that goal, increase it for the next month. For additional competition, have staff track the number of miles they bike in a month. Keep the data public so people are inspired to ride more and take down whoever is in the lead.

Inspire staff to pursue their goals

Dare Day, a holiday with an unknown past according to Holiday Insights, is celebrated June 1. Companies can use this holiday as an opportunity to challenge people, daring them to step outside their comfort zone and reach for their personal and work goals. In an office setting, Dare Day can ignite a company-wide effort for self-improvement. It would be fun to create a challenge for the whole office or allow staff members to set their own goals.

Getting Fit
It’s common for offices to hold fitness challenges to encourage healthy living and weight maintenance. Consider handing out sports bottles to employees in the beginning of the month. There are many options for shapes, sizes and materials including those with screw tops like the Kona Stainless Steel Sports Bottle or plastic bottles with filters and straws such as the Cool Gear Pure Bottle. Purchasing water bottles for the staff may also cut down on the number of plastic bottles used around the office, which in turn reduces landfill waste. A dual-purpose gift!

Personalized and promotional lightweight backpacks are also a great way of encouraging employees to get outside and exercise when they leave the office. With a small cloth bag like the Fold Up Backpack or Promotional Drawstring Backpack, people can bring their gym sneakers and a change of clothes anywhere without having to maneuver a large, cumbersome bag. Both of those backpacks are offered in an array of colors and it’s easy to add the company name to either, meaning employees are always showing the brand off.

To keep track of how many hours they work out in the month and time sets of exercises, employees may like Right on Time Promotional Watches. The watch comes in eight different colors and can be personalized with a company logo or slogan.

Personal goals
Other goals people may set for themselves on Dare Day are to eat healthier or spend less money. A pocket calendar for each employee can help individuals set goals and deadlines to stay on track throughout June if they would like to dare themselves to take on an entirely different challenge.

It may be easier to stick to a healthy diet if people bring lunch and snacks from home. This way, portions can be controlled and food options aren’t limited to what restaurants near the office are serving. Employees who take on the dare to bring lunch from home can receive a lunch bag for easy transport. The Custom Insulated Lunch Bag or Koozie Fun Lunch Cooler would be great Dare Day gifts because they are spacious and can keep food cold longer than a brown bag. Check out the latter in blue or red, featuring a front slip pocket for napkins or utensils. Packing a lunch at home can also support the goal to spend less money.

It’s often much more affordable to buy groceries and make lunch ahead of time than stopping by a local restaurant during the lunch break. Another way for employees to keep a bit more money in their pockets is by bringing coffee from home rather than buying lattes during the day. Consider giving employees a to-go mug so they can keep filling it with coffee from the office. Check out the Custom Tumbler With A Color Twist Lid in four colors or the Curve Travel Tumbler in black or white.

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