Put some wellness in your workplace – how about yoga?
As a member of the Sourcing and Research Team at Objective Paradigm and an enthusiastic yogi, I was thrilled when Managing Partner, Ryan Pollock, asked if employees would be interested in attending group yoga classes!
The idea was for our office to have the option of participating once or twice a month either in the Chicago office or close by. I not only responded that, ‘YES!’ I would be interested, but I also offered to help organize OP’s yoga initiative.
Getting the yoga plan rolling and engaging the team!
Ryan and I connected with yoga instructor Mar Miles (www.yogawithmar.com) to pick the days and times for the classes. We agreed that lunchtime would be the best and picked a date for our first class.
From there, OP’s HR Generalist, Dayna, and I worked together to plan the classes. We put together a budget for the program and worked with leadership for approval.
Next step: location.
When planning in-office wellness programs it’s important to make sure employees are comfortable – here are a few things to consider:
- Is there enough space in our office?
- Will employees be comfortable?
- Will those not participating be distracted by the group practice?
After evaluating our location and working with Mar, we decided to use the Breather room upstairs. Breather (breather.com) is a service that allows you to book certain rooms by the hour for a whole range of purposes. These rooms are available in a ton of different buildings in cities throughout the U.S. and Canada, and there happens to be one 2 floors above our office that, with a few minor furniture moves, works well as a yoga studio.
Logistics and hype.
With the location set and dates booked, our team then sent out a recurring calendar event to everyone in the company. Those who RSVP’d ‘yes’ receive a reminder email before each class to bring their mats and other yoga gear.
Encouraging people to join the class hasn’t been difficult. It’s a great way to take a break, de-stress, and for some – try something new! While we have a core group of office yoga “regulars” who attend each class, there are others who may or may not make a certain class depending on schedules – everyone seems to enjoy the flexibility as you don’t always get that with a regular studio practice.
Making sure the initiative is communicated during onboarding new employees has been a critical part of it’s growth. We are excited to have three OP new hires in our next class!
Benefits and bonuses: Yoga is FUN!
Everyone who has attended the classes agrees that we feel refreshed, more calm, and more focused after the class. The 45-minute long class is a good break to take care of our mental and physical health.
A growing body of research suggests that yoga and meditation may reduce the stress that tends to assail bodies confined to desks for hours at a time. Companies are investing in the notion that limiting stress will translate into fewer employee absences, lower health care costs and higher morale, encouraging workers to stick around. – Peter S. Goodman*
Objective Paradigm looks to host classes twice a month in the new year. Our 2017 goals for corporate wellness include, enhancing productivity, keeping our team mindful of the benefits of wellness, and to increase the number of male participants in the class!
We’d like to thank Mar and Breather and everyone at OP that supports this initiative – we’ve seen success in a short period of time and look forward to keeping up OP’s lunchtime yoga schedule.
*More on Yoga in the Workplace from Peter S. Goodman
In-office yoga classes are one of those perks I’d heard about at other firms and always thought would be really cool. I do yoga to clear my head and give me an energy boost midday, so to have that experience in the office alongside my coworkers is not only convenient, but lots of fun. – Alyssa Lloyd, Sourcer – Objective Paradigm, Chicago, IL
Alyssa Lloyd is a Research and Sourcing Specialist at Objective Paradigm. She is from Pittsburgh, PA, and graduated in 2013 from Northwestern University with a degree in Social Policy and International Studies. Alyssa studied in Australia and has worked in industries such as hospitality, legal, nonprofit, and research institutions. She loves connecting with people over things they have in common, whether it be Hispanic heritage, the ability to speak Chinese, or practicing yoga. She enjoys working in tech recruiting because it makes her feel like she’s part of the world of the TV show Silicon Valley.