Healthy Lifestyle Tips

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Wellness Is Valuable, Why Aren't Small Businesses Invested In Their Employees?

Estimates show that over $260 billion is lost every year in productivity because of unhealthy lifestyles but small firms have few options when it comes to employee wellness programs, leaving them behind in their investments in employee health. Over 80% of large firms in America have workplace wellness programs; these incentive-based programs are often expensive to operate and can have mixed results. So, while small firms can have an increased reliance on their employees health, they're often unable to make sound investments in it.


Government agencies have made efforts to change lifestyles in America, often focusing on marketing, also known as awareness, programs. They focus on informing consumers of what a healthy diet looks like, providing basic knowledge like an apple is a better choice than a cookie for your health. These kinds of programs also have mixed results and are not commonly staffed by the high powered names behind campaigns from corporate giants like fast food restaurants or sugary foods. The fact is that market forces, like the perceived low cost of fast food (likely at least partially due to aggressive advertising campaigns), and popular culture hooks (think YOLO) work against these efforts.


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By displacing the drive for capital accumulation with the drive for people's wellness, organizations looking for growth will be looking at the health benefits they provide for society. This is called the wellbeing economy; it's a new concept placing people's health at the center of the economy. If this sounds like a radical shift, I'd argue that the economic framework we live under right now is very radical, or even extreme. Our capital oriented economy results in the preventable deaths of millions of people every year, a act that would be labeled extreme in another context (calling this mass murder may be more appropriate than it seems at first glance). How much would change in corporate culture if these preventable deaths resulted in successful wrongful death claims to the companies responsible each time they occurred?


There's no easy answer and no quick fix for the failure of small employers to be adequately invested in the health of their employees. Quantie's game mechanism and no-cost rewards system may help small organizations to be of some benefit to their employees' health, a real win-win (especially now), but the big picture of a corrosive culture and economic system will not be changed by our efforts alone. These kinds of systematic changes will be achieved by collaborative efforts across the nation to reject the promotion of greed over need.


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