Author, Lauren Stumpf, Media Communications Assistant, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.
WHAT IS THE 7TH INNING STRETCH?
At the office we sit at the desk quite a bit. If you’re not careful the only time you are getting up throughout the day is at your break and lunch. So, about four years ago Rancho Mesa started a routine as part of their Health and Wellness Program. The daily walks, also known as the 7th Inning Stretch, provide an opportunity for the staff to get away from their desks, get moving, and enjoy the outdoors. Every day at 10:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. a song will play throughout the Rancho Mesa office and when that song concludes, everyone that wants to participate will stand up from their desk, walk to the front door, and head out for some fresh air. Employees walk to the end of the street, turn around and walk back, totaling a distance of a little over a half of a mile. When returning to the office, employees grab a marble. At the end of each quarter they turn in all the marbles collected from each walk. Prizes are awarded based on the number of marbles each person has earned.
This not only gives staff the opportunity to get up and moving, but it gives them the chance to talk and get to know fellow employees. This has been the biggest success with the 7th Inning Stretch; the moral, the culture of our office that has increased as we get to know each other more each day.
HOW IT STARTED
Former employee Dede Pyle proposed the 7th Inning Stretch to Rancho Mesa in November 2014, as a means to stay healthy and focused during the agency’s 01/01 crunch, which is the busiest time of year in the insurance industry. The goal was to raise the energy level in a healthy, non-stressful way, have quality time away from the workstation and create camaraderie within the agency. In addition to the twice daily walks, Rancho Mesa provides healthy snacks on Tuesday, also known as Healthy Snack Tuesday which is an alternative to the vending machine snacks.
“RMI’s 7th Inning Stretch success could not have occurred without the tremendous support of Dave Garcia and the staff. Can you name another company who rewards their employees for time away from their desks?" said Dede Pyle.
WHAT’S NEW IN 2019?
Rancho Mesa Insurance Services Inc. believes it is extremely important to support efforts within the community. Rancho Mesa currently works with over 40 local non-profits and has donated over $1 million in the last 20 years. This year employees wanted to expand the benefits of the 7th Inning Stretch outside of the office. Now employees walk for a local non-profit in lieu of individual gifts. From the 40+ non-profits that Rancho Mesa supports, employees will pick one per quarter to walk for. At the end of the quarter and once the walk goal has been met, Rancho Mesa will donate $1,000 on behalf of their employees, to the non-profit chosen for the quarter.
Employees of Rancho Mesa say, “TOGETHER WE WALK – TOGETHER WE GIVE!”