The Vernon Company recently launched a full-scale wellness initiative, Commit To Be Fit, with the goal of educating, encouraging and engaging employees to adopt healthier lifestyles.
“We hope to provide employees with the tools they need to be more aware of healthy lifestyles,” said Chris Vernon, President, “and ultimately get employees more involved in their overall health & wellness.”
The Commit To Be Fit program officially kicked-off with a ribbon cutting at the company’s new, on-site Fitness Center. The center, a remodeled large conference room on the company’s first floor, features multiple treadmills, elliptical machines, complete fixed weight machine and free weights. The fitness center is available for employee use from 6:00 AM – 6:00 PM. In addition, the company installed on-site showers, lockers & dressing areas for men and women.
Last fall, Vernon instituted a Wellness Council to oversee corporate health activities. The council conducted an employee-wide survey to gauge awareness and interest from staff and has been planning a number of innovative programs to address employee health and wellness concerns.
From the survey feedback, Vernon opened the on-site employee Fitness Center, has conducted complete wellness screenings for employees, tested all water sources on-site, installed two new ice machines and switched to healthier food options in its vending machines. All vending machine food items are clearly ranked according to nutritional value.
Later this month, the company will break ground on its new, onsite company garden. Planting, cultivating and harvesting will be done by company employees and their families. A portion of the fresh produce harvested from the garden throughout the Summer and Fall will be donated to local agencies to feed the hungry.
Events such as health fairs, lunch-and-learn sessions, guest speakers, healthy food demonstrations, and more, are planned to educate employees about healthier lifestyles. Employees are also being encouraged to get up and get moving through the fitness center, group walks, employee exercise groups and fitness classes (e.g., walking/ running club, 5K training programs, etc.). The wellness council also has implemented “Fruitilicious Tuesday” where a variety of fresh seasonal fruit is made available to all employees each Tuesday.
As part of the program, the company also instituted a completely tobacco-free campus, effective last November. Smoking cessation classes are offered to employees as part of this initiative.
Commit to Be Fit merchandise rewards are awarded to active participants in the program, to continually motivate and reward employees’ healthy behaviors.
“We’re excited to see how this program helps employees adopt healthier lifestyles and change their lives, for the better,” said Vernon. “We’ve been thrilled by the employee support and general enthusiasm to make positive, meaningful changes to improve their health.”
About The Vernon Company
The Vernon Company, a fourth-generation family business founded in 1902, manufactures and markets targeted promotional advertising-based solutions to help businesses build their brand, establish a corporate identity and increase profits. The company has over 30,000 customers, served by 330 account executives and sales managers throughout the United States and Puerto Rico and 190 administrative and production employees in its Newton, Iowa, headquarters and two sign graphics manufacturing subsidiaries based in Missouri and New Jersey.