Wellness Coordinators – 4 Workplace Trends and How Worksite Wellness Might Respond (Are You Ready?)

Identifying and understanding current and emerging trends is important for the worksite wellness coordinator. And you do want to be prepared for whatever the future might bring, correct? trendyworld

These four trends by no means reflect all the trends or maybe even the biggest trends future workplaces are likely to see. This just happens to be the list I saw that generated the idea for me to write this article. These four trends are put forth by Anne Loehr, a self-described Generational Guru. This might explain why the four trends contain a generational flavor. bjak

Her four trends are:

• 40% of the workforce will be temporary workers by 2020.

• Women are leaving the corporate world.

• The old minority is the new majority.

• Over 40% of the U.S. workforce will be leaving in the next decade.

Temporary Workers

If 40% of a workplace’s workers are temporary, this will require a very different approach to worksite wellness than is generally practiced today. Today’s approach primarily focuses on risk reduction which has a long view perspective. Temporary workers obviously require a short-term perspective.

For an audience of temporary workers, a worksite wellness program focus will need to be on the effective utilization of healthcare related resources and human performance, not disease prevention. To better help temporary workers appropriately access healthcare services, wellness programming with a focus on medical self-care programming would be a great strategy. treecuttingbranchoutservices

To enhance human performance, worksite wellness programming could include such topics as: energy management, vitality, stress management, strengths, performance psychology, fatigue, decision-making, critical thinking, problem solving, engagement and other topics and skills that can have an immediate impact on performance.

Women Leaving Corporations

If women do leave corporations in large numbers, I see this having at least two impacts on worksite wellness. The first will be the need to more closely gear the available programming towards the needs, desires and interests of men. Men have historically been less inclined than women to participate in worksite based programming. Secondly, the programming will need to closely align with the needs interests and desires of the remaining women so it provides them with a “value added” reason for remaining with the corporation.

The New Majority

When today’s minorities become the new majority, worksite wellness programming will obviously need to reflect the needs, practices and cultural aspects associated with the new majority. Programming resources and materials will need to be multi-racial and multi-cultural in their perspective. Program practitioners will also need to feel comfortable in their knowledge and understanding of the employees who will make up the new majority.

Fewer Workers

If over 40% of the U.S. workforce leaves the workforce in the next decade, this will place increasing pressure on the remaining workers. With fewer workers being available in the future, the “do more with less” mentality will certainly predominate. From a programming perspective, this means programming will need to focus more on human performance, by specifically addressing such areas as: stress management, employee engagement and burn-out prevention.

Bonus Trend: Healthy Organizations

If there is one over-arching trend emerging in worksite wellness today, I would argue that it is the recognition that we need to address organizational health just as much as we need to address individual employee health. Worksite wellness in the future will be about creating healthy organizations just as much as it is today about creating healthy employees.

Trends, even if they never actually materialize almost, are always about change. Worksite wellness programs need to be able to change their programming, with the times, as well.

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