The care and feeding of industrial athletes


The concept of industrial athletes was born in the last decade or so and refers to those who employees who make their living using their knowledge, skills and abilities to perform a job that often requires physical demands. The term industrial athlete is accurate as defined because there are definite similarities between what we normally think of as an athlete and an industrial athlete. How are you supporting the industrial athletes in your company?

Thoughtfully structured Safety and Corporate Wellness programs can incorporate training that will help employees to build and reinforce the necessary skills to perform their jobs, condition them to avoid common injuries and educate them on techniques that can help them perform their duties safely. UPS partnered with health and fitness experts to incorporate exactly this type of training into their organization, with dramatic results.

Whether your employees are driving long distances, lifting heavy boxes or equipment or even sitting at a computer all day, there are health risks involved. Performing a study of common injuries and devising a program to train employees to minimize risk will help to improve several metrics within your organization. A comprehensive Safety and/or Wellness Program can:

  • Minimize common accidents on the job
  • Reduce sick days
  • Increase employee retention
  • Increase production
  • Lower insurance and claims costs
  • Produce a healthier workforce
  • Reduce both company and employee medical costs


You’re in this Together

Keep in mind that the employee can’t do it on their own. The company must provide the necessary training and tools. If your workforce does not do any heavy lifting but spends the day sitting at computers, they are still at risk for certain health or physical issues. Providing ergonomic chairs, computer desks and even computer reading glasses may make sense for your organization. Identifying the risks and tracking accidents or incidents within your organization is a good first step. Then hire professionals to help you design a program that will achieve your goals.

Don’t Try This at Home

It’s not as easy as it looks. Make sure to partner with both health professionals as well as those who are experienced in designing corporate Safety and Wellness programs. There are ways in which programs can be structured to fairly reward employees for completing training modules, demonstrating the desired behaviors and reducing accidents or incidents in the workplace.

Developing a targeted and thoughtful Safety or Wellness program that addresses specific employee risks will not only improve your bottom line but will show employees that you value their health and well-being. You’ll be demonstrating that you are willing to protect and invest in your most important asset: your employees.

All Star Incentive Marketing’s Incentive Professionals are ready to work with your team to design the reward, recognition or incentive programs that will achieve your goals. Contact us today!



In economic terms, the multiplier effect refers to the proportional increase or decrease in final income that results from an injection or withdrawal of capital. In terms of Safety Reward Programs, the multiplier effect might refer to the ROI² (Return on Incentive Investment). A properly structured program significantly impacts overall employee engagement and safety culture, where employees are attuned to safety-related issues, inspired to display “Above & Beyond” safe behaviors, willing to be safety ambassadors, and encouraged to promote learning and support continuous improvement. Such best-in-class programs are designed to promote group objectives and reward individual behavior, engaging, motivating, and rewarding the people behind your success.

Fortunately, there are thousands of companies in high-risk industries that have excellent safety programming, training, and coaching in place. Many include safety in their list of core values and have invested heavily in EHS (Environment, Health, and Safety) technology, training, telematics, and personnel. However, too many miss the opportunity to incentivize and recognize individual safety contributions, behaviors, and performance.

Programs featuring tangible and experiential awards as the reward currency can have a multiplying effect that pays dividends. Benefits include a more highly engaged workforce, fewer accidents and incidents, reduced claims and losses, lower turnover and absenteeism, better communication, increased productivity, visibility to leading and lagging indicators, incremental coaching and training opportunities, and improved profitability.

So, what’s the rub? Are engagement programs focused on employee safety, health, and wellness expensive to implement? Do they only make sense for companies with thousands of safety-sensitive workers? The answer to both questions is no. Properly structured programs can be cost-effective and right-sized for companies with as few as 100 safety-sensitive workers up to those with 10,000 or more. The ROI² of these programs can be expressed as a ratio (in this case, 4:1), with quantitative results showing a savings of $4.00 for every $1.00 invested and qualitative results revealing higher employee morale, which serves as a catalyst for productivity. Safety Reward Programs help to mitigate risk, elevate employee engagement, and improve overall safety culture. They also present an excellent opportunity for companies to simply say thank you to their employees for being safe, committed, and engaged.

People have an inherent need to know that their efforts do not go unnoticed. Safety Reward Programs provide the stimulus and energy that encourage employees to perform at their best and achieve new heights.



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