Hello everyone, I’d like to start by introducing myself. My name is Charlotte Wulfert, I’m studying Health Services Management at Kempten University of Applied Sciences and I’m currently completing my practical semester in the Health Management department at MANN+HUMMEL.
Right from the start of my placement, I have been actively supporting the ‘Boarding Gesundheit’ (Getting on board with health) seminar, which was specially devised for the target group of employees over 55. The seminar is really a starting point – hence its name – after all, a lot of work needs to be done before we can call the seminar ‘Setting sail for better health and well-being’.
With this in mind, I am even more delighted that we won the Human Resources Excellence Award in November 2017, one of the highest awards in the HR division in Germany. This award is testament to how strong and innovative the concept behind the seminar is, but what can participants expect from it? I wanted to find out the answer to this myself so I took part in one of the sessions.
The ‘crew’, consisting of Captain Michael Fränkel (sports scientist), Bettina Islinger (sports scientist) and Alina Reiß (nutritionist), welcomed all the participants with a tasty fruit smoothie, and the Caribbean music in the background created the perfect atmosphere for our cruise. “This is great,” I thought to myself, “I could get used to this!”
The traffic light plate
After a few introductory words from our captain, we plotted a course for our first destination, the Isle of Nutrition, with Alina Reiß taking the helm. Her interesting talk revealed which nutrients are contained in different foods and what a balanced diet looks like. My favourite tip here was the ‘traffic light plate’: the idea here is that, if you have all the colours of a traffic light on your plate, you should automatically have a balanced meal in front of you. After all, it is not possible to have all these colours on your plate without having some vegetables there – there’s no such thing as green meat!
Next up, we were able to get involved ourselves and prepare a small snack. This consisted of carrot salad, natural yoghurt with fruit and an avocado-based dip – guacamole. Most of the participants didn’t know where to begin with this strange fruit, but despite some initial reservations, everyone had a taste and by the end they had all been won over. For anyone wanting to try it for themselves, I’ve included the recipe here:
Relaxation exercises for stress relief
The captain then took control once more, and we continued our journey on to the Isle of Relaxation. The modern world is characterised by constant availability, stress and a hectic pace of life, extending to all areas of working life. This can become overwhelming at times, so it’s even more important that we make a conscious effort to take breaks. My favourite exercise for a quick relaxation break is a technique known as ‘palming’, which involves covering your closed eyes with your palms. I always find this helpful when I’m up to my eyes in revision and I’m feeling the strain.
‘If you rest you rust’?
In order to stop us all from drifting off after some ample relaxation time, the next destination on our journey was the Isle of Movement. The talk here focussed on putting a few common myths to the test. ‘If you rest you rust’, for example, is only half the story: as we had already learned on the Isle of Relaxation, it should really be ‘’You rust if you rest and you rust if you don’t rest!’ After this, we were put through our paces with some coordination and strength exercises. These involved throwing, catching and hitting small bean bags – sometimes all at once – which certainly helped us work up a sweat!
Leadership, and not just in filtration
This was the final port of call on our journey towards health and well-being. In conclusion, I’d say that Healthy living@MANN+HUMMEL has once again succeeded in coming up with a great concept for its employees with this seminar. Focusing on the target group of employees over 55 shows that MANN+HUMMEL is actively engaging with its ageing workforce, and that the company sees its employees’ long-term health as a central concern. For me, MANN+HUMMEL is setting the right example here, not only showing leadership in filtration but also in health management.