Why should employers implement health promotions?
Essentially, we promote health to our employees so they’ll be more successful in the workplace and also know that they are valued. In turn, this can affect engagement, retention and attraction of top employees.

What are you hoping to add to UBC’s health initiatives?
Lots more. We’re planning to expand our lunchtime workshops, so we’re looking at one or two a week, generally. [Over 2010, UBC held 46 workshops with more than 1,100 participants.]

We’re going to look at changing UBC Thrive to be less event-oriented and more focused on organizational change through interactive videos.

We’ll also focus more on faculty. Faculty can be a difficult population to reach with this type of programming. They don’t have regular work hours, and their primary interface is typically with their students, research and teaching. The idea that the university would be looking out for their health may come as a surprise to them.

We’re looking at rolling out faculty-specific initiatives, which will include a request for presentations from the various research faculty, PhDs and post-docs to highlight the current health research being done at UBC.

We’re also going to do a promotional mailing to highlight the many resources we offer to faculty to prioritize their health.

What is your ultimate goal for UBC?
My underlying goal is [to communicate] that to be a UBC faculty or staff member who’s successful means that we also need you to prioritize your health. Because if you don’t, over time, we don’t expect to be able to keep you—whether you move on, or you end up being ill or simply not as productive.

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Copyright © 2020 Transcontinental Media G.P. This article first appeared in Benefits Canada.

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