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Wellnesssucks
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KD in the hizouse. Getting it right as always.
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You know where I stand on all this. I think we should have Annie launch her own nutritional supplements brand at every Wal-Mart super center. For reals: http://youtu.be/Ds-PEI-q8fs XO T
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There is a reason that, despite actually being female, my avatar is a male online. I have a lot fewer followers, but I will live. For the longest time there was a picture that someone took of me at a pool party and tagged on flickr in the top 10 images when you searched my name. It was awesome (not) to think that every time I walked into a sales meeting someone in the room might have seen me in a bikini. After a couple of years of nagging I was able to get the acquaintance who took the pictures to delete them but by that point half the business world had seen me mostly naked.
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I am so super late to the party on this one, as far as comments go, but as far as picking apart the whole "Biggest Loser" idea goes, I thoroughly gutted it in a blog post, like, 2 years ago. http://recesswellness.com/blog/?p=38 Take that, Sackett!
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Jessica was totally right. This was worth the read.
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Awwwww. If I could throw all this in a bag and deliver, I would. XOXOX FOT. See you in Vegas, baby.
Toggle Commented Dec 23, 2010 on All We Want for Christmas... at Fistful of Talent
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In my observations I think at least part of the problem is learned helplessness. In my estimation, as someone who is not in HR but often works hand in hand with HR, it isn't just HR functions that end up this way. I cannot explain how it happens but when people end up as employees and cannot or do not think entrepreneurially (or in the business jargon "take ownership" in their work) I think it lends to a very small, role-based perspective and usually to this kind of unimaginative thinking. Most of the people I know who don't think this way either own their own companies, run companies or someday will...
Toggle Commented Oct 29, 2010 on HR Plays Too Much Defense at Fistful of Talent
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And by the way even 100 employees with $500 just-for-the-heck-of-it foot doctor visits will hardly register a blip on the claims experience of an employer who has 4 diabetics, a heart patient and a complicated pregnancy/birth/baby in a NICU. Most employees who elect higher copay and high deductible plans are healthier anyway and were probably generating far far far fewer claims in the first place. The piddly savings from having a few people skip having a mole removed might make some administrators feel like they really outsmarted those 'darned entitled nincompoops', but the only person getting hoodwinked here is the person who honestly believes that is going to make a difference in the long run.
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No way. I get all that and most healthcare companies are shooting for 87:100 not 70:100 in our market - so perhaps the carriers here are not as aggressive. They don't care about whether or not Sally gets her surgery - the insurance companies are getting paid either way by raising premiums - as you have noted. People use it or people don't - if they don't hit the mark they just raise prices. Changing around co-pay and deductible options and adding CDHP gives the illusion of customer service to customers (employers) who are desperate to to anything that might lower their insane premiums. And the copay question? Most of the people who are driving the experience rates on the back end of most companies I have seen have some serious serious problems. We are talking heart failure, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis - not elective surgery as you seem to imply. Honestly the $40 difference in copay might deter someone possibly kicking the tires on elective surgery but for most employer claims experience that I have seen - and I have seen a lot - it is just plain old run of the mill poor health. You can try and convince me that someone who needs insulin to prevent renal failure is not going pay the difference in copay. I suppose it happens. In the end, even if they don't the employer will be paying the price later when that same person has a very expensive medical emergency. So it's pay now or pay later in the sick Americans game.
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Oh no one needs to convince me of the tricky ROI and metrics for wellness. I live it every day. But I do also know that when done right these programs DO bend the trend. The truth is that most programs are poorly implemented. Very poorly implemented. The costs are not increasing to deter anyone from use. They are increasing because of a lot of extremely complex reasons which at the end of a day mean that employers pay the brunt of health care costs in America (the Federal government being the largest of those employers - by far). So what are your options as an employer? 1 - Drop health coverage for employees altogether. 2 - Do whatever you can possibly do to have any piddly impact on your trend and then use that as a negotiating tool when renewals come along. I have seen #2 work but it takes more than slapping an online portal on your server somewhere and calling it good. I get that HR Pros are overworked and under appreciated. I really do. I see it every day. But that goes for a lot of workers the world over. In the US until we have some kind of better health care system the whole employer welfare system is par for the course. You can work to change the system or you can play with the hand you've been dealt. Or you can do both, but either way employer sponsored health care is here to stay for the time being and let's come up with some strategies to do it better.
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Woot! My home state. Put your hands in the ay-yer for Wisco and bring me back some cheese churds. Seriously though, I think creativity values that paint a pretty picture about what the company stands for but that pesky cash flow component of doing business are going to sound like platitudes when the rubber hits the road. I always appreciate seeing companies that make mention of money at least somewhere in their values - at least you know they are being honest.
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This pains me to read. I know this all too well. Aaaaaalllll too well. How the heck do we as a country claim to eschew any form of welfare yet as a workforce expect the companies that hire us to act like benevolent parents? I actually believe in social welfare but I think the administration of it through the workplace is ridiculous for far more reasons than I can fit into this comment box. Chief among those reasons is the weird entitlement mentality that permeates the workforce and employers. Many workers expect to have their every need provided by employers. Employers then expect that employees will spend every waking hour thinking about and completing work. I have seen this as both an employee and employer. I much preferred living in northern Europe where no one worried about how they were getting their medical care or how much time they could take for paternity. Work is a place where you go to work - that's it. You work hard all day and then you leave. It was simple, efficient, and everyone knew what to expect.
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Kris, you are a terrible person and I cannot believe you have any friends. Kidding. I am laughing so hard.
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Reading this gave me a stomach ache just thinking about it. It takes guts to be honest. Ultimately, though, I think it is the best policy, provided you can deliver the news with tact.
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Laughed out loud at "people-burning-mattresses-while-singing-Rocky Top type of bad news."
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Ha ha. KD, when did that little snippet show up on your signature? After I told you that you'd be good stalker fodder? This post is so true and I wonder about the impact it will have on all of our personal lives. Apropos: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/18/fashion/18facebook.html?pagewanted=2 On the same token I have always felt like living an authentic life was an aspiration I wished more people had. Now, maybe they won't have a choice int he matter.
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You are a good writer, Steve. I hope that you are right, that employers see their best talent going to the competition and get smart about communication and retention. On the flip side, I can totally see this backfiring on some employees who tend to be career hoppers. Anyone who is interested in making an interesting career move needs to be able to articulate her own wishes for development and advancement. Algorithms are certainly useful but at the end of the day no job is a perfect match - it is a two way street that requires communication on both parts. There is something to be said for each of us being willing to endure some ebbs and flows in our working situation and as a small business owner I see that as a key attribute of anyone I hire.
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This is a very sad component of the medical system indeed. Worse yet it's been shown time and time again in studies that he cost of a procedure in a fee for services health care environment does lead to more doctors recommending riskier, more experimental and more expensive procedures. I see every day how even insurance companies are more willing to pay thousands to amputate a leg than to pay for a nutritionist to help someone overcome/manage pre diabetes. Their argument - the amputation solves the problem but adherence to the nutrition regimen might not work because it depends on the will of the patient. No return on investment for the nutritionist. The twists in logic are interesting, to be sure.
Toggle Commented Sep 14, 2010 on The Healthcare Reality Check at Talent 911
The tidbits about needing people ont he inside to both write well and "get it" couldn't be more accurate. Our newsletter always gets rave reviews as being funny and well written. None of the people who have ever written it were "professionals." They have all been people who know the business inside and out and we got lucky and noticed that they happen to write well.
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OMG this is beyond ridiculous. Must retweet.
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The midsize market is very much undeserved when it comes to pretty much any type of information management system in the HR and benefits realm. Sadly, in an economy where small to midsized firms are slower to add jobs, it can be just as challenging to try and add another body to what might not be a full time job.
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You could not be more right about this. It's like the bicyclist that won't yield to an automobile because he technically has the right of way. I say, it isn't worth ending up under the bus.
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Also one correction on the post - video was created by Sockeye Creative and the amazing James Westby on Recess' behalf. Check em out! http://www.sockeyecreative.com/ PS Their Web site does not do them justice - too busy making the awesome for client who want to do the right thing.
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Kris Dunn. The man. The legend. The four time winner of our company's Biggest Loser competition.
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Aug 11, 2010