Scoping out the Situation Ahead of Time Can Boost Follow-Through

You know your employees are much more than any number on an annual report – they are a big brother, a father, a t-ball coach. Do your employees know you recognize them as so? If you want to talk about health and how important preventive care is, it may be as simple as relating to them as a person.

A study conducted by gastroenterologists at the University of Chicago Medicine found that those eligible for a colonoscopy screening (based on age) were more likely to follow through with the procedure after using an interactive educational aid. With the multimedia, Web-based program, patients learned about colonoscopy prep, how the procedure is performed, and the risks and benefits. They could also interact and type questions, which were answered by their physician or a staff member, to learn from past experiences. The study found that patients who used the resource were 40% less likely to cancel their appointment. Programs like the one used in the study can be integral to health promotion at your company because they pair knowledge with human experience, which can drive home the importance of health maintenance far more successfully.

“Examples of other people’s experiences can help [your employees] decide what’s best for [them],” says University of Michigan psychology professor Colleen Seifert.

How to Relate to Your Employees to Encourage Greater Participation

  • Get real with your employees. Share testimonials with your workforce. The best way to connect and really ensure understanding of any health topic is to relate to the human perspective of each situation.
  • Learn what’s on their mind. Survey your workforce to see what health issues or conditions rank highest among their concerns. This way, you can provide the tailored education and interaction they didn’t know they need. They are more likely to tune in, too. Asset Health offers courses tailored to just about every aspect of health.
  • Picture it. Visuals carry weight and bring any story to life. Share a short video clip of an interview or a photo with a quote. Get creative with editing or keep it simple.
  • Engage. Invite your employees to interact in some way with the message you are trying to convey. For example, provide an avenue for them to share their story (openly or anonymously) on your private internal website. This could also lead to a great resource for sharing your company’s testimonial videos, which will further engage your workforce.
  • Link to interactive sites to provide additional resources for your employees. If you don’t have a wellness program, or your program doesn’t provide interactive educational aids, gathering and promoting well-researched sites can reinforce healthier decisions.