Wellness is an expanded idea of health and implies more than absence from disease. Wellness is not just being healthy physically but it embraces a holistic concept of health of our whole being – body, mind and Spirit. Wellness is an overall balance of physical, social, spiritual, emotional, intellectual, environmental, and occupational well-being.
Why Corporate Wellness Programs in Industry?
In the year 2008, Apollo Wellness in association with Confederation Of Indian Industries (CII) conducted a Wellness survey in the industries of India. The following are the highlights of the report that, to say the least, is alarming:
- Heart attack is the biggest killer worldwide especially amongst Executives, accounting for over 60% Medicare costs.
- The Chief Executives’ High Cardiac risk status was 58.07%, with 35.90% having high blood pressure, 12.82% having diabetes, and 23.08% having elevated blood cholesterol, with many executives having more than one of these ailments.
- Research reveals that the CEO is more at risk than his executives with 58.97% high risk as compared to 56.05% high risk amongst executives.
- Amongst Chief Executives, 82.05% were found to be overweight. 76.92% CEO’s had stomachs that were larger than their chests. 69.23% of CEO’s were found to be in hopelessly poor physical fitness condition.
- While 83.71% executives complained of stress related ailments; the figure for CEO’s stood at 100.00%.
Thus, there is an urgent need to address these health concerns of not only Executives in industries, but also in the entire workforce so that medical cost could be reduced and total performance and quality of life could be enhanced.
Total Wellness Management
Total Wellness Management [TWM] is a term coined by Dr.B.R.Pai, Chairman and Managing Director of VWF Group of Industries, Mysore for a set of wellness programmes to address the health and happiness of the Corporate People.
Dr.B.R.Pai is spiritually oriented and blends traditional values with modern tools of Management and is ever ready to experiment with new and innovative ideas, products and systems in his group of companies.
The innovative TWM program is a term applied to corporate programs that helps employees balance the rigours of their work, lives and their own mental and physical health.
TWM has been developed on the lines of TQM, TPM, JIT, ISO etc, which deal with the management of tangible productive assets, products, processes and services. Programs like TQM, TPM, JIT, ISO deal with material management whereas TWM deals with fundamental requirements of human resources management. For example TQM deals with the quality of the product whereas TWM deals with the quality (Wellness) of the people.
Total Wellness Management is a holistic concept that makes way for purposeful and meaningful life of the individual as well as the organisation. It is based on the maxim “Healthy People make Healthy Companies”
Impact of TWM in Industry
The Apollo – CII study of 2008 says that corporate professionals take good health for granted till they suffer a major health crisis. The competition in the corporate world is very intense and the demands from the managers, both in terms of the quantity as well as quality of work, are getting more exacting. Under these circumstances a reduced contribution of an executive who is either absent or delivering less on account of sickness affects adversely the overall endeavour of achieving organizational objectives.
Thus it is very clear that a structured holistic health program is necessary to save our CEOs and their team in the corporate sector from stress and its aftermath. That support is introducing Total Wellness Management Programs in the industry.
Total Wellness Management programs have long been advocated as a way to decrease healthcare costs, reduce absenteeism, and increase productivity. Wellness programs are defined as programs designed to maintain and improve employee health before health related issues arise.
Wellness programs can address such issues as weight reduction, improved physical fitness, decreasing stress levels, improved mental health, increased stamina and assist in increasing overall well-being. As employees address these issues we see the benefits not only in reduced healthcare costs but also in decreased incidence of illness and injuries, reduced employee absenteeism, improved employee relations and morale and, of course, increased productivity. As an additional bonus, the comradeship in an organization improves along with overall satisfaction and happiness of the workers.
From a management perspective, wellness programs have the potential to decrease absenteeism, reduce medical claims costs, and improve employee productivity, recruitment, and retention.
Objectives of TWM Programs
The objectives of TWM programs are:
- To cut employee health costs.
- To help employees change unhealthy lifestyles.
- To improve employee morale.
- To improve performance and increase Productivity.
- To establish a healthy environment.
- To reduce the level of attrition.
- To reduce absenteeism.
- To reduce accidents in the work place, and not the least,
- To promote corporate image.