Motivating Employees Always A
Challenging Goal, Managers Say
and incenting employees to participate in their
wellness programs is a much cited chief concern of wellness and health
promotion professionals responding to the Workplace Wellness Management
Survey, sponsored by WellnessJunction.
expressed concerns of wellness managers were such comments as getting
employees to "buy in;" participation and commitment; "getting people
engaged and participating;" ample time for the employee to participate
in any programming; "how to retain employees once they are engaged in
the program;" the lack of individual employee motivation; getting
people to use their memberships; and motivating additional
is employees "have so many work-related time constraints that sometimes
it is difficult to get them to see wellness programs as a good use of
their already limited time," said a corporate nurse practitioner.
employee enrollment in programs a manager health promotion said: "Those
interested in the interventions are the ones who need the interventions
employees once they participate in a wellness program is a challenge
said a corporate wellness coordinator. "People start off with a great
deal of enthusiasm, but unless continual reinforcement or some kind of
incentive is offered, they tend to fall out ... participation drops."
between incentives and participation was brought up by another survey
respondent who cited incentive-based (premium reduction) health
coverage that rewards plan participants who attain personal health
improvement goals as an issue.
healthcare system as we know it in America will financially self
destruct in the near future if more creative approaches are not
introduced," said G. Gregory Tooker, president and principal consultant
of a wellness services company. "Dollar savings incentives through
reduction of personal health risk is the only way to move the majority
of the population to change its lifestyle."
Miles, a hospital occupational health manager: "In the current
environment of people assuming less responsibility for their actions,
it is going to be imperative for the employer to use
‘strong-arm’ tactics to force (or incentivize)
employers to make healthier choices."
participation is what makes the programs work," said a corporate health
and wellness consultant. "I am responsible for participation whether or
not I get incentives. Incentives sure would help though."
manager observed that "Although employees are encouraged to
participate, they often don’t without tangible rewards, which
drive up the costs of the programs."
programs fresh and new is important to the ongoing employee
participation, said a respondent. "In order to do something long term
we need something and someway to have people remain interested."
between the promotion of wellness efforts "while many organizations are
tasking employees to a greater extent in terms of productivity and
output expectations and demanding longer hours in the workplace" is a
dilemma, believes an EAP director.
between wellness and work/life balance and the increasing demands of
productivity and hours worked is becoming very pronounced in many
organizations and seems to underminethe wellness message," the EA
respondent cited the "Time crunch; employees can’t seem to
the time to get into the onsite fitness center. People in general just
seem to be getting busier and busier!"
is just our lifestyles today as well as the mentality of employers, do
more with less people," he said.
employees to participate in high-risk intervention programs is of keen
interest to Jan Renner, a hospital supervisor of community education
companies feel the need to implement programs but the employees must
want to make changes. In order to continue programming, we need to show
success. Success will happen if we can getemployees to participate and
complete intervention activities."
people participate we have less impact. People cite time, money, and
disinterest as reasons to not participate," offered a hospital director
of wellness services.
is always a challenge because it relates to budget. If there is no
participation there are no results," agreed a hospital program
low-wage earners is the chief concern of Margarita Chapman, executive
director of Creating Healthy Lives. "The low-wage earners are the
people that drive healthcare costs and, unfortunately are in the
poorest health while receiving the poorest care."
Christopher A. Sylvain, PD, CEO of a wellness services company summed
up the issue: "If members are motivated, it solves all of the other
problems of costs and outcomes."
Wellness Management Survey was conducted among subscribers
to Wellness Program
Management Advisor and Wellness Junction Professional
Update and among members of the www.WellnessJunction.com