Shelter Dogs ‘Rescue’ TechWolf Employees from Sedentary Routine

TechWolf introduced a new initiative allowing employees to step outdoors, go for a walk and make a canine friend.

In January, TechWolf introduced a new initiative allowing employees to move away from sedentarism. An innovative program in partnership with Dierenasiel Gent is seeking to "rescue" TechWolf employees from their daily routine by encouraging them to step outdoors, go for a walk and make a canine friend.

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Thibo Vanquaethem (Machine Learning Engineer) and Silas Deblanc (Software Engineer) taking their new friend for a walk around the office.

"Dogs are widely known as stress relievers and faithful companions," Andreas De Neve, TechWolf CEO, says. "We don't always notice how many hours we spend sitting down during the day. There's no better way to spend a short break than with a canine friend that will take the stress out of your day."

The Walking Club with one of the shelter dogs can be a great way to keep up with your fitness and socialising; the program is not solely directed to corporate employees but seeks to get people out of their chairs and on the move by pairing them with dogs in need of forever homes. Anyone can do it!

TechWolf has long developed a culture fond of "walking meetings" to promote mental and physical wellness in the workplace, which is why the new dog walking initiative fits perfectly with the company's culture.

Our walking meetings are simply what the name suggests: a meeting that takes place away from the typical area - an office room or indoor location. This not only boosts health metrics as we usually spend too much time sitting down but is also an excellent prerequisite to unplug and ultimately be more productive.

Data shows that walking leads to increased creativity, and there is plenty of evidence that walking meetings lead to more transparent idea exchanges between colleagues than formal sessions.

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Thibo and Luna

If you are interested in adding walking meetings to your internal culture, here are three tips that can help you ensure your sessions go better than they would in an office:

1. Plan your meetings in advance

It's one thing to ask a colleague for an ad-hoc sit-down and another to suggest a walk. If you plan to spend time away from your office, notify your colleague in advance. This allows them to arrive prepared and dressed for walking comfort.

2. Stick to small groups

While meetings with more than three people are common in the workplace, it is difficult to pay attention when walking in line with a larger group. We suggest walking with no more than three people to always pay attention to who is talking and what is being said.

3. Don't make the topic too complex

Your walking meetings will make it more challenging for you to take notes, so ensure that the topic you discuss is lightweight and doesn't require a lot of note-taking. If needed, you can always use your phone, but remember why you stepped away from the office in the first place: don't walk at a time when you are on your phone the entire time.

TechWolf is one example of how companies can help employees combat sedentary lifestyles by giving them reasons to get up, stretch their legs—and help some animals in the process.

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