Participation by managers and company leaders is a big factor in making wellness programs successful, according to Tenney.
“If we start at the top of organizations, it can have the greatest effect to create leverage and make the greatest impact,” he says. “Leadership isn’t only achieving organizational objectives but also adding metrics such as: What is the well-being of the people on my team? How happy are they when they come to work every day?”
Crosby and Gribble both participate.
“We try to inspire our employees by ‘walking the walk,’ being compassionate and conveying the biggest and simplest of thoughts—always remember that everyone started somewhere,” they say. “The runner was once a walker, the walker was once a sitter, and no matter who you are or how you feel, there’s always someone who was exactly where you are when they started.”
Wellness programs have almost become table stakes for a well-rounded employee benefits package, says David Martin, managing principal of credit union services for Digital Benefit Advisors.
“Credit union leadership currently offering a wellness solution or considering doing so shouldn’t insist on identifying or quantifying immediate ROI [return on investment],” he says. “Wellness solutions serve a more holistic benefit, including the perception that an employer cares about their employees holistic well-being, increased presenteeism, and decreased absenteeism,” he says.
While the bottom-line results will come over time, many employers with wellness programs just want to see employees lead happier, more fulfilling lives.
“I think the most important reason for offering a wellness plan is that it shows your employees that you care about their health and you’re willing to help support their efforts to live a healthier lifestyle,” Davis says. Productivity and employee satisfaction improves—and so does member satisfaction, the ultimate beneficiaries of wellness programs.
Tenney echoes the sentiment. “When people feel they’re truly cared for, that’s when you get these amazing business outcomes,” he says. “They go above and beyond what they’re asked to do because they want to. This happens when people know their leaders truly care about them.”
For more insight from digital benefit advisors on how CUs can use wellness programs effectively, visit creditunionmagazine.com.