Motivating Employees to Achieve Well-being Goals

Create a Culture of Health and Happiness by Incentivizing employees to prioritize well-being goals. Explore strategies to overcome demotivation, and create successful programs that foster health and happiness while enhancing productivity and attracting top talent.

Organizations worldwide have recognized the potential of a healthy and happier workforce. With a growing focus on employee well-being goals, research reveals that nine out of 10 organizations now offer at least one well-being benefit to their employees, while three in five companies have dedicated budgets for employee well-being programs. However, challenges persist. Despite these encouraging signs, many factors demotivate employees from taking their physical and mental health seriously. As a result, companies seek innovative ways to motivate their workforce to participate in wellness programs actively.

What Demotivates Employees to Participate in Wellness Programs

Motivating employees to prioritize self-care can be a challenging task for many companies. While employees may understand the importance of personal well-being, they often prioritize work demands over their health. Several factors contribute to this reluctance to engage in wellness activities provided by employers.

Reasons for demotivation

Overwhelming Workload

Employees frequently face heavy workloads that leave little time for self-care. The demands of their jobs make it difficult to allocate time for personal health and well-being. For instance, a senior financial analyst, Mervin, has gained 10 kg in the last three years due to a packed schedule that leaves no time for self-care.


Lack of awareness about the significance of personal well-being goals can also hinder employee motivation. In some cases, employees may not fully grasp how high-stress levels impact their health and productivity. Building awareness around the significance of self-care is essential for encouraging employees to participate in wellness programs.

Cultural Nuances

Certain organizational cultures prioritize long work hours and reward employees for their dedication. Prevailing work culture can create doubt in employees’ minds about the importance of dedicating time and effort to their health. Cultural nuances within an organization can be significant roadblocks to employees taking their health and well-being seriously.

Ways to Motivate Employees towards a Successful Well-being Program

Free Subscriptions

Companies can provide employees access to gym memberships, yoga or meditation classes, nutrition counseling, or wellness apps at no cost. Mitigating financial barriers motivates employees to participate in well-being initiatives without worrying about their budget and expenses.

Financial Rewards

Employers can link employee well-being to performance-based incentives. By offering bonuses or attractive gift cards for achieving wellness milestones or targets, companies can motivate employees to adopt healthy habits and embrace a balanced lifestyle.

Intangible Benefits

Non-monetary rewards can be equally effective in motivating employees. Flexible work schedules can be linked to wellness goals, allowing employees to work at their own pace and create a healthy work-life balance. Social recognition, such as awards or certificates presented in the presence of peers, can also boost motivation.

Providing Health Allowances

Employers can offer health allowances that employees can use to invest in their well-being goals. A dedicated healthcare expenditure allows employees to allocate funds toward wellness courses of their choice, providing further flexibility and autonomy in pursuing a healthy lifestyle.

Organizing Wellness Competitions

Step-counting challenges, friendly sports competitions, or team-based wellness initiatives create a sense of excitement and healthy competition among employees. These initiatives foster engagement, teamwork, and camaraderie while motivating employees to achieve their wellness targets.

The COVID-19 pandemic underscored the significance of employee well-being, prompting employers to prioritize their workforce’s physical and mental health. Prioritizing employee well-being benefits individual employees and creates a positive work environment that enhances productivity, reduces absenteeism, supports mental health, attracts and retains top talent, and fosters a culture of engagement and satisfaction within the organization.

By incentivizing employees to prioritize their well-being goals, workplaces can create a culture of health and happiness that not only contributes to individual growth and fulfillment but also promotes the overall success and well-being of the organization itself.