Your Sick Employees Are Costing You Money

Increased health of employees --> increased productivity --> increased profitability. This is not just an attention-grabbing talking point that personal trainers use to drum up business. It’s backed by research! Keep reading…  

I recently had the honor of participating in a panel discussion about health and fitness for the East Cobb Business Association. The ECBA is like a local chamber of commerce for businesses of varying sizes. It was a lively, productive discussion and the diverse group of business owners in attendance lobbed great questions about general health and wellness topics at me and my fellow panel members.

I couldn’t help but leave the discussion that day, however, thinking we missed the mark on addressing what should be a key priority for all business owners: employee wellness. 

There’s no denying that we are rapidly getting sicker as a population, and with chronic diseases that are largely preventable through regular exercise and other positive lifestyle changes. These diseases are the leading driver of healthcare costs in the U.S., costing us $3.5 TRILLION annually, a price tag that has more than doubled since the year 2000. That figure should get business owners to pay attention! Our illness-riddled working population is impacting the bottom line. 

Studies are now showing that mental acuity is directly linked to physical activity. Here are just a few of the cognitive benefits individuals get from a regular exercise routine: better concentration, memory, and creativity, lower stress, and an enhanced ability to learn and retain information. Additionally, employees who work out also report an increased ability to manage their time, enhanced productivity, and more effective relationships with their colleagues. 

I could go on and on about this, but the bottom line is that inactive, unhealthy employees end up being ineffective, expensive employees. If you own a business or are in leadership at a company, you should consider implementing some sort of employee wellness program sooner rather than later. Employee surveys have actually shown that a huge majority (87%) of workers want their employers to offer these types of benefits! So not only do these corporate wellness and fitness programs lead to better productivity, less absenteeism, and lower healthcare costs, but they most likely will help you recruit better job candidates as well!