As noted in Part 1 of Game Changing Habits of Highly Effective Wellness Professionals, cultivating the right habits such as being more organized and getting connected, can significantly alter the outcome of your success. Additional practices are shared here in Part 2 of this blog series. If you’re a wellness professional in the health and fitness industry, you frequently face new challenges. Rise to the occasion by exercising game-changing habits and be more effective each day.
They Grow Professionally –
It is critical that wellness professionals maintain current knowledge, skills, and credentials. But continuing with professional development and gaining additional skills can also prove considerably valuable. Whether it’s acquiring advanced skills in software such as Power Point or learning more about fitness assessment, broadening your knowledge and improving on-the-job skills with training leads to expertise. Competency and aptitude build confidence while growth in your professional life can increase job satisfaction, productivity, and morale. And in an industry that is constantly evolving, staying current with developing health research, advances in technology, and trends is especially important. In this video, SkillsActive takes a look at Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for fitness professionals:
“Skills go after time, and knowledge goes after time. If you don’t keep on top of it, you lose it. And our industry in particular moves very quickly – research changes, methodologies change… ” – SkillsActive
There are endless opportunities – formal or self-directed – for job enhancement: educational workshops, certifications, industry tradeshows, conferences, college courses, books, blogs, webinars, seminars, webcasts, and podcasts, OH MY! Consider online CPD courses such as Coursera’s “An Introduction to Population Health” or “Measuring Company Culture” from Udemy. Brush up on business skills at Skillshare or learn about technology at Slideshare. Stir your curiosity with Ted Talks podcasts or watch the ACE webinar “Making the Case for Active Worksites.”
Whatever ways you choose to grow professionally, challenge yourself to establish a job skills development plan with quarterly goals. Then make a commitment to reach those goals, schedule time to complete the training, and take advantage of the many existing resources that will help you excel and flourish. Click here for 10 tips for helping yourself grow.
They Get Creative –
Today’s busy wellness professionals are responsible for innumerable and wide-ranging tasks. Projects may include planning a company-wide health fair, designing incentive programs, administering a wellness portal, managing onsite fitness centers, promoting health education, and reporting on data analytics. But wait, there’s more! Tasks need to be carried out within an allotted budget and time frame and inside of available resources and technology. And don’t forget to include attention to branding, graphics, and communications since promoting employee health programs intersects with marketing.
How is this juggling act accomplished? How is worksite wellness made accessible to a diverse population of varying interests and fitness levels? How are programs kept fun, fresh, and innovative year after year? How is participant engagement maximized and organizational culture positively affected? By adding a little – or a lot! – of creativity into the bigger picture.
You don’t need Picasso’s talent and you won’t need an art studio filled with inspiring Pantone-colored paints. But admins who find ways to get creative will see that it contributes to the overall success of critical thinking, problem solving, improving processes, and implementing innovative ideas and strategies. Creativity is always an asset and one of the most valuable qualities you can cultivate. Respondents in a small survey by Creative Huddle even reported that being creative at work positively impacts engagement, motivation, happiness, and productivity.
Creativity in the Workplace by CiC suggests tips such as giving yourself permission to be curious and open. Strategist and Innovation Consultant Annabel Acton explains that creativity is a muscle that needs to be exercised and suggests some surprising ways to be innovative at work every day. Teams can also work together to nurture a creative environment and maintain a “culture of creativity” in the workplace. So get the creative juices flowing and make creativity a daily habit!
They Keep a Pulse on the Population –
Do you know what percent of your population are tech-savvy millennials, have hypertension, or how many participated in your last team challenge? Successful implementation and administration of health and wellness programs depends in part on how much insight you have into the population being managed. Targeted programs, fitness classes, and communications should be dependent on factors such as age, risk factors, disease, lifestyle, and interest. For example, worksite wellness at a corporation comprised of 75% low risk, active, non-smokers will look quite different compared with health promotion to a community of 75% high risk, inactive smokers. Keeping a continual pulse on your specific population is the only way to address – and therefore impact and change – the health of your population.
“Program evaluation is an essential element of effective, comprehensive workplace programs that aim to protect and improve worker safety, health, and well-being. Evaluation results can drive program improvement by enabling key decision-makers to have sufficient, reliable information on which to base their decisions for change.” – The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Popular and proven methods like validated health risk appraisals are invaluable when it comes to assessing demographics, health status, and behaviors. Additional questionnaires such as Readiness For Change and anonymous surveys can also be used as viable evaluation tools. Keep in mind that gaining population awareness doesn’t need to be complicated and arduous. Software with advanced technology offers the best of both worlds – stress-free implementation of detailed questionnaires and the ability to easily analyze aggregate data. Eliminating the paper trail, reaching remote employees, and storing data to measure progress over time is an added bonus. And don’t underestimate simple solutions such as daily interaction with participants and carefully listening to feedback. Like a sea captain who uses nautical charts and real-time data to steer a ship, use what you know to navigate your wellness program.
Be intentional about putting these habits into practice starting today and aim for greater effectiveness and success. And don’t forget to share this post if you found it helpful. We would love to hear from you – what game-changing habits do you think contribute to the overall success of today’s busy wellness professionals? Thanks for reading – stay healthy and stay tuned for Part 3… !
Rachael E. Picone, MS, is the Motivation Alliance Product Evangelist at BSDI. She earned her Master of Science degree in exercise physiology from The University of Massachusetts. Ms. Picone has more than 20 years of diverse experience with a professional history encompassing corporate fitness, health education and promotion, sports and leisure management, cardiac rehabilitation, and personal training. In her spare time, Rachael enjoys dancing, biking, and photography.
Images: Adobe Stock
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