Healthy work environment keeps co. in good shape

You’re at work and a bell rings. More

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A PBN SPECIAL SECTION: 2011 BEST PLACES TO WORK

Healthy work environment keeps co. in good shape

CLIMBING UP: ShapeUp is a growing enterprise, one that takes its mission of creating healthier workplaces seriously and has fun while doing it. PHOTO COURTESY SHAPEUP, BY SCOTT ERB
Posted 6/13/11

You’re at work and a bell rings.

Drop everything! You’re about to hear good news!

That’s just one of the ways ShapeUp – formerly Shape Up The Nation – provides a unique workplace.

Founded in 2006 by Rajiv Kumar and Brad Weinberg, the corporate-wellness company that now employs 49 people – and climbing – uses social networks to promote healthy living. Its online platform allows individuals to build a social network to meet wellness goals, such as increasing physical activity, improving diet and quitting tobacco.

The resources of this company are used by more than 200 employers and health plans worldwide. Employees also reap healthy benefits. All receive free gym memberships, daily healthy snacks and access to a wellness platform to organize activities. In addition, they participate in a compensation bonus program as well as stock options.

There’s also an on-site exercise room with cardio machines and showers. Exercise-ball chairs are available to all; and everyone, including CEO Mike Zani, works in an open area to facilitate communication. The company provides paid parking and an on-site dry cleaning service. Pets are welcome on the job.

Annual daylong events include a city-wide scavenger hunt, a downtown walking tour, and “Run-Rib-Chug,” all bringing employees together outdoors for friendly competition. In fact, every day brings a new challenge or activity, like doing as many pushups as possible.

And yes, virtually every employee gets healthier after coming on board. “It’s hard not to!” said Jackie Dube, vice president of human relations.

As for that “good news bell,” it hangs in a prominent spot, and employees ring it before announcing a special success to everyone. •

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