Should companies give their employees free massages?MyoBuddy Massager
All of us need a way to relax at the end of a long day. For me, a massage sometimes feels like just what I need. The thought of getting a massage during the workday on the company’s dime seems like a dream scenario.
Getting a massage at work isn’t as crazy as it sounds. More companies are becoming open to the idea of offering massages to their employees. In fact, Google, a company that has long been at the forefront of innovative workplace ideas, has been hiring massage therapists as part of their staff for nearly a decade.
Google seems to have the right idea. The American Institute of Stress estimates that workplace stress costs $300 billion a year due to employees missing work, employees being less productive, and stress-related health care costs. Other studies show that 20% of workers risk health issues as a result of stress.
This makes it imperative to find a way to reduce stress at the workplace. Employers finding a way for their workers to receive free massages at work could be a perfect solution. Both companies and their employees can benefit from employees being able to receive a massage during the workday.
Prevent workplace depression
Work can be mentally and physically exhausting, and feeling the effects of stress at work has become all too familiar. Minimizing that stress is imperative for people in both their personal and professional lives and massages could be the answer. Research shows that regular massages help to reduce the hormones that cause stress and high blood pressure.
One stress sets in, depression generally isn’t far behind, which can be even more problematic for both employers and their workers. Studies suggest that people with stressful jobs who don’t get enough support can experience depression.
It’s not hard to see how depression can cause a decrease in productivity. This puts employers in a position where they have a vested interest in the morale of their workers. One possible way to do this is finding a way to provide free massages to employees.
Reduce sick days
Even if we’re not technically under the weather, haven’t we all called in sick to work to take a mental health day? I know for me, life can pile up so fast sometimes that I just need a day to relax and rest. Companies can’t like this, but I think that every employee who works hard is entitled to an extra day off now and then.
If there were a way to get the rest and relaxation you need without having to call in sick, it would be a win-win for both companies and employees. A mid-day massage at the office sounds like it could be the perfect solution, doesn’t it?
Knowing that you can get a massage at work can take away the need to call in sick for a mental health day. Studies show that massages not only reduce stress and anxiety, but they can also be helpful in treating headaches, joint pain, digestive disorders, and other conditions that may cause a person to call in sick to work.
I won’t go so far as to say that a simple massage can cure all that ails you. However, recent research in massage therapy suggests that it can provide a boost to the immune system. In that sense, if employers were to give their workers free massages, it would be an investment in preventing future sick days, which is obviously good for business.
Creativity plays an increasingly important role in the workplace, and it’s another area where massage therapy can be helpful. Massage therapy has been shown to help you relax and free up your mind. You can find creative ideas and solutions to problems that you may not be able to find when you’re feeling tense and weighed down.
In fact, many massage therapists testify to being present when their client has an “aha moment” when facing a problem. They attribute this to the relaxed state they experience during a massage. It’s my belief that making it easier for employees to get massages can improve both the volume and the quality of the work that employees produce for their company.
Make it happen
It’s not my place to say what a company should do or how they should treat their employees. But I will say that making a massage therapist available to employees at the office as little as once a month or once a week is an affordable expenditure for most companies.
If you take into account everything I’ve mentioned about massages reducing stress, helping employees avoid sick days, and improving creativity, it’s an investment in the company that has a chance to pay off in the long run.
Author bio: Helen Sanders is chief editor at HealthAmbition.com. Established in 2012, Health Ambition has grown rapidly in recent years. Our goal is to provide easy-to-understand health and nutrition advice that makes a real impact. We pride ourselves on making sure our actionable advice can be followed by regular people with busy lives.