Inspiration for excellent workplace wellness typically comes from successful companies or HR experts. But what if we could learn best practices for workplace wellness from a whole state?
The Last Frontier state is our source of that inspiration this year.
Alaska ranked at the top for overall well-being and happiness in the comprehensive 2014 Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index. The annual survey polls more than 176,000 people across the country.
The Well-Being Index measures five aspects of our lives:
- Purpose: liking what you do each day, being motivated to achieve goals
- Social: having supportive relationships and love in your life
- Financial: managing your economic life to reduce stress and increase security
- Community: liking where you live, feeling safe, having pride in your community
- Physical: having good health and enough energy for daily life
Alaska leads the country almost every category, reaching the top spot overall for the first time since Gallup-Healthways began tracking well-being in 2008. Hawaii and South Dakota round out the top three for 2014.
Where does your state rank? Read the full analysis of survey results.
City and state rankings are common fodder for Internet listicles — and often based on shaky data — but the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index is one worth noting. Not only the research comprehensive and deep, the results appear to correlate with other markers of success.
“Well-being surveys aren’t just for bragging rights,” writes Washington Post staffer Reid Wilson, in his GovBeat post, “Best State in America: Alaska, Where Well-Being Is Highest.”
“Previous surveys have found that better scores are related to positive outcomes such as lower workplace absenteeism rates, better performance at work, lower obesity rates, and lower rates of teen pregnancy and crime,” Reid writes.
Read on to find out why Alaskans are so happy — and why their state is a model for workplace wellness.