4 reasons it’s a great time to work in wellness

Mr. Rogers said to ‘look for the helpers.’ That’s where you come in.

By Robby Brumberg      @robbybrumberg      
Why it's a great time to work in wellness

We’re living through strange, traumatic times.

It’s been almost a year since COVID-19 turned our world upside down, and there’s still not quite an end to this horrible pandemic in sight. But where there is humanity, there is hope. You just have to find the helpers. Or, better yet, be one of the helpers who uplifts, encourages and inspires colleagues during such a stressful season of life.

In this spirit of camaraderie and support, we thought it’d be apt to serve up a reminder of why your work is significant and why it’s a great time to be dedicated to worker well-being. Here are four reasons in particular:

1. You’re shaping the future of work.

And the future of the workforce, too.

As JD Supra writes, the Biden administration is eyeing big, sweeping changes to the workplace landscape:

“Joe Biden plans to launch an ambitious labor, employment and immigration agenda, ranging from adopting a national $15 per hour minimum wage; to ensuring the advancement of racial equity and LGBTQ equality through enhanced enforcement of workplace discrimination laws; to expanding employment-based immigration visas and guest worker programs; to ending controversial asylum policies and modernizing America’s immigration system; to repealing the ability of states to implement right-to-work laws.”

Wellness and HR pros will be integral in helping companies adopt these strides toward greater equity, health and balance for American workers. Which of course includes new, relevant benefits to match our stressful era. As Fidelity states, workers are increasingly “viewing benefits in terms of diversity and inclusion and how benefits will serve all members of their workforce, as well as how each benefit can contribute to their employees’ overall well-being.”

That same report predicts an uptick in benefits such as bolstering employees’ emergency savings funds, alleviating student debt, offering mental health support, and caregiving support. Employee Benefits News reports that 64% of workers are pleased with the way their employers have treated them during COVID-19 so far, so these efforts to adapt offerings are not going unnoticed.

Thanks to you, the future of the work is trending toward compassion, empathy and understanding.   

2. You’re helping people get healthier.

Whether it’s sparking step challenges, securing telehealth access, providing mental health first-aid training or leading mindfulness exercises, your work increases healthy habits that extend and enrich lives. That’s no small feat.

For a bit of inspiration, here are 14 workplace wellness success stories.  

And don’t forget about financial health. Lowe’s, for example, has now offered seven bonuses or special payments to support hourly workers during the pandemic.

Keep in mind: Don’t stress if you feel like your efforts are falling short. You can’t force anyone to make healthier decisions. As Gallup writes, you don’t need to be a “mental health expert; you just have to be a conduit to the right resources.”

3. Your job prospects are bright.

The workplace wellness industry is projected to grow exponentially over the next few years. As The University of Wisconsin reports:

“Also, top employers of health and wellness professionals–including general medical and surgical hospitals, individual and family services, outpatient care centers, and government support organizations–are projected to grow 4 to 14 percent over the next decade. This suggests positive growth for health and wellness jobs as well.”

4. You’re doing meaningful, fulfilling and bottom-line-boosting work.   

What better way to spend your days than to help people live fuller, healthier and more empowered lives? Just in case you need a succinct reminder—or perhaps a bullet list to stick on your mirror or your boss’ monitor—this is what you do:

·        Wellness programs reduce elevated health risks and improve employee health behaviors.

·        Wellness programs reduce health care costs.

·        Wellness programs improve productivity.

·        Wellness programs can decrease absenteeism.

·        Wellness programs can help improve employee recruitment and retention.

·        Wellness programs build and help sustain high employee morale.

Keep going, wellness pros. And keep up the good work.