Gen-H Spotlight: Wellness Plan in Action – The Cincinnati Chamber’s Top 8 Ideas for Low-Cost Workplace Engagement

The Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber was recently recognized by the Cincinnati Business Courier for its efforts in creating a culture of health, in partnership with its employees, by being awarded Healthiest Employer of Greater Cincinnati for two years in a row. We think their “mind-body-spirit” approach is inspiring and worthy of sharing with you, our Gen-H friends and supporters – as the “Health Generation” – to spark ideas you might take into your own workplace.
Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber

We asked the Cincinnati Chamber’s Tarah Cook to walk us through some of their most popular activities for making the healthy choice the easy choice on the job. (Got ideas to share? Contact Amy Goetz at, or leave a comment below!)

Wellness Plan in Action: The Cincinnati Chamber’s Top Eight Ideas for Low-Cost Workplace Engagement

By Tarah Cook, MS, SPHR
Director, HR & Organizational Development
Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber

Strategies for creating a workplace culture of health can be taken farther than engaging internal team members. Take your wellness program to the next level by developing a collaborative partnership with your benefits vendors and brokers in conjunction with your internal wellness committee. At the Cincinnati Chamber, we’re proud that our external partners support us along our collective journey to better health and wellness. For example, our wellness engagement program, Humana GO365, keeps our team members focused and working toward both individual and organizational goals.

As you look to create or enhance your workplace wellness strategies, here are some ideas to help ignite your team’s energy and enthusiasm for wellness at work:

  • 1. Encourage healthy eating

    Host a “Bring-your-own-topping” salad bar potluck for a shared staff lunch.
  • 2. Lunch and learn video series

    Examples: Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution; Food Matters; Hungry for Change; National Geographic’s Stress: Portrait of a Killer; health-related TED and TEDx talks
  • 3. Wellness Walks

    Hold a varied-route 3K as a group, or split into teams for healthy competition and friendly banter.
  • 4. Financial health education

    Partner with your retirement plan vendor or others to offer group education and 1:1 plan reviews.
  • 5. Get a massage

    Bring in an on-site massage therapist regularly (employees may self-pay if cost-prohibitive).
  • 6. Wellness challenge

    Pick a theme or activity of your choice, ex. mindfulness, circuit training, step challenge, healthy scavenger hunt, healthy foods bingo; recruit employees to help run the program to ensure peer-to-peer buy-in.
  • 7. Book club

    Suggestions include The Book of Joy, The Art of Happiness, In Defense of Food, etc. Encourage staff recommendations and discussion groups.
  • 8. Cook up a cookoff

    Have a contest to see who can make the tastiest healthy treat – such as smoothies, healthy appetizers, healthier-ingredient favorites – and have staff or external partners judge. Make winning recipes available to staff to try at home and share the love.
Cincinnati USA Chamber staff
Cincinnati USA Chamber staff stepping up wellness at work
Cincinnati USA Chamber Heart Mini
Chamber staff compete in Heart Mini
Chamber Healthiest Employer winners 2017
L-R: Brendon Cull, Stu Scheller, Tarah Cook, and Veronica Ruschman of the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber accept the 2017 Healthiest Employer Award (photo credit: David Kalonick)

Questions about the above?

Craving more ideas?

Contact Tarah Cook, MS, SPHR, at

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