Naturally, team wellness is a year-round concern, but as we move into autumn this colourful season is accompanied by changes that make October and November the ideal time to focus on workplace wellness. Your secret weapon this year? Thoughtful team wellness gifts. With colder weather and longer nights, it’s important to prioritise your team’s physical and mental wellbeing – taking extra care over everything from food and drink to team activities and rest periods.
Much as a good pumpkin spice latte feels like it can fix anything (and they really do work wonders!) there are many other ways to boost the team mood, enhance connection between your colleagues and keep spirits high as we head in to autumn.
Before we begin: maintaining team wellness doesn’t have to be complicated or costly. Keeping employee engagement up this season is all about staying present, expressing your support and yes, treating teams to the occasional gift. Here are our tips for supporting employees and avoiding burnout with strategies and cosy team wellness gifts that are perfect for autumn.
This autumn promises bigger challenges than just the cold and flu season, as we’re also facing the cost of living crisis. Of course, there’s no easy fix for this situation. The financial toll is one thing, but the associated anxiety is likely to affect at least some of your colleagues on a profound level.
This isn’t something that companies can fix for their employees, but it can be comforting to emphasise across company comms that we are all in this crisis together – and that extra support will be made available wherever possible.
Scheduling regular wellbeing one-to-ones as well as maintaining an open door policy for impromptu people HR chats will become extra important as we weather these unprecedented times together. As we’ve discovered in our recent survey, small gestures go a long way to making employees feel seen and appreciated.
Team wellness gifts like Sculpt home pottery kits or seed kits from the Gluttonous Gardener are a simple way to offer your employees a welcome release and show your support during this difficult time. A small token of appreciation can truly brighten someone’s day, especially if it's accompanied by a kind and caring message from their team leader.
Another recent concern we’ve noted is the disconnect felt by remote or hybrid workers in the aftermath of the pandemic. While working from home offers increased flexibility for many, as the days get shorter it can lead to employees not leaving their homes for extended periods of time, and increased feelings of isolation.
It can be so tempting to start hibernating this season (by which we mean taking extra duvet days or indulging in comfort foods, rather than literally hibernating!) But longer term these habits won’t enhance employee wellbeing, they’ll only make people feel sluggish and less connected.
Take time to plan regular company get-togethers – whether it’s a Halloween Zoom quiz, a walk in the park to admire the autumn leaves, or treating teams to Hussle gym or spa passes. Our group-huggg feature is a great way to get people talking, with a social interaction function built in so everyone can share the love.
Shorter days and colder weather in the autumn months can have a negative effect on physical wellbeing, causing fatigue and even seasonal affective disorder. SAD is a type of depression that comes and goes in a seasonal pattern, usually symptoms become more apparent and severe during the winter months – probably due to a lack of sunlight.
Lifestyle measures such as getting natural sunlight wherever possible, regular exercise and coping strategies to manage stress levels can all help combat the effects of SAD. You might even want to encourage the odd outdoor huddle or walking catch up to take advantage of the sunlight while you can!
At this time of year it’s also advisable to take an additional Vitamin D supplement, as we get most of our Vitamin D from the sun and our intake decreases when we spend more time inside. By giving team wellness gifts of nourishing recipe boxes (Huggg offers boxes by HelloFresh, Green Chef and Pasta Evangelists) or nutritional supplements by Zooki, you’re sure to inspire even the most cautious of cooks to dish up something new using immunity-boosting ingredients.
Rail strikes and leaves on the line are a surefire way to put employees in a bad mood before they even reach the office. What’s worse, a long commute home (in the dark!) will impact their downtime, leaving them with fewer hours to relax before the next work day. While we’ve seen almost every employer offer flexible working conditions post-pandemic, sometimes there’s no substitute for time spent in-office.
Switched on people teams acknowledge that their employee’s commute is another part of the working day, and adding a little extra joy where they can will go a long way to improving employee morale during the rainy season.
Warm up chilly autumnal mornings by team gifting a hot drink on the go from Caffè Nero or Greggs. Even if your employees are fully remote or hybrid, they might still be braving the morning cold to do the school run or to walk the dog – in which case, a hot drink at home by Pact or TrueStart coffee will put a spring in their step.
As part of our mission to offer more sustainable gifts, we’re also proud to offer recycled reusable coffee cups and water bottles from Circular & Co, which make the perfect team wellness gifts to accompany the morning commute.
Not getting enough sleep can have a negative effect on the immune system, making employees more susceptible to catching colds and having a detrimental effect on employee wellness. As the nights lengthen and the clocks go back, it’s important to maintain regular hours by getting up and going to bed at similar times every day.
Team wellness gifts of scented candles and luxury sets by Molton Brown or Grüum’s bedtime bundle can help employees carve out some much-needed self care and create a relaxing bedtime routine, night after night.