Friday morning at a quarter to ten – a large number of employees have gathered at the Academy for the start of the first Haniel Health Day. They are eagerly awaited by Peter Sticksel, who opens this special day as Group Director HR: "As a company, we bear a social responsibility towards our employees. We wish them to be and remain healthy." Health preservation – this is the stated aim of Health Day. "We wish to increase your awareness of the importance of listening to the signals of your body and taking them seriously. Therefore, please make use of the exciting Health Day opportunities to familiarise yourself with the preventive offerings and examinations offered by Corporate Health Management."
Corporate Health Management comprises a broad range of offerings – such as massages. Each Wednesday, Karsten Merten attends to the employees' tense back muscles. The employees had the opportunity on Health Day to try out this service free of charge – and that's just what they did. Merten's appointment list was very quickly filled up. It goes without saying that sport also forms part of a healthy lifestyle, but after a hard day at the office the couch potato in us is often crying out for the sofa. How can we overcome this? Extreme athlete and motivator Andreas Niedrig offers some constructive suggestions in his presentation Who says life always has to be easy?
Bye-bye couch potato!
"I'm not going to show you any theoretical methods of motivation," explains Niedrig. "I wish to arouse your emotions and to use my own life history to show you what human beings are capable of achieving if only they have the will." The likeable triathlete talks openly in a personal presentation about his drug addiction, life on the streets, the therapy and his struggle to gain a foothold again in life – thereby awakening emotions. His two-hour presentation causes many in the audience to come out in goose pimples. "I've never thought about the issue of health," says Niedrig. "I then spent two years in hospital due to a doctors' error. The doctors assured me that I would never be able to play sport again." Four years later, Niedrig won the German triathlon championship. "I decide what happens in my life. You can turn dreams into goals and goals are things you can achieve."
Sustenance with healthy food
After this exciting presentation the employees were in need of some sustenance. The free and healthy catering with salad, wholemeal noodles, fresh vegetables and fruit gave them the necessary energy for the activities to follow. It goes without saying that the disposable crockery was biodegradable and selected in accordance with our environmental protection and sustainability principles. The employees took the opportunity to have their gait analysed on the treadmill, Haniel company physician Dr Michaela Vormstein advised them on important vaccinations and the Adler pharmacy offered quick tests of blood sugar and cholesterol levels. Those not sampling yoga or fitness training but instead wishing to find out about healthy nutrition attended the presentation entitled The mammoth hunter on the metro – how to eat in tune with our genes given by nutritionist Michael Pagelsdorf. However, staying healthy requires a bit more than a good diet and plenty of exercise – namely taking breaks.
By measuring heart rate variability, Petra Jansing tested the stress and relaxation levels of the employees and talked in her presentation entitled Everyday stress management about how employees under strain can offset stress and performance pressure by means of small and feasible changes in their daily working lives – in line with the theme of "Gaining power by taking a break".
Looking forward to the next time!
"The first Haniel Health Day was a resounding success," says Martina Tinnefeld, VITAL project manager and Health Day organiser. "We have received consistently positive feedback as well as suggestions and ideas for the next Health Day. We hope that we have been able to motivate our employees to do something for their health and are already looking forward to the next Health Day."