Corporate Wellness to Enhance Individual PerformanceBy Miriam Bello | Mon, 08/10/2020 - 11:45
Q: What is Alive Wellness Consulting’s view on corporate wellness?
A: Alive Consulting has four main divisions: wellness consulting, wellness transformation, corporate wellness and wellness health design. We try to integrate new knowledge on health paradigms into daily corporate practices. The patient-centric approach is a huge driver to these paradigms, which means it is key to empower each patient and make them responsible for their own health, instead of just prescribing and focusing on corrective healthcare when the person has already faced a complication. Lifestyle plays a big role in encouraging and empowering people regarding their health, including nutrition, exercise, meditation and sleep, but also self-awareness, motivation and community.
Alive Consulting looks forward to introducing Mexico to these integrative ways of creating health for the patient. We founded the Mexican Association of Lifestyle Medicine, which is a sister organization to the International Board of Lifestyle Medicine in charge of certifying medical professionals in lifestyle medicine.
Community generates health, not medicine. At Alive Consulting, we are trying to generate that community among medical professionals, people, companies and schools. Our goal is to change the paradigm of health in the future. Instead of working with a reactive system, we want to become a generator of well-being and health focused on prevention.
Q: What deficiencies did you find among Mexican companies regarding wellness?
A: Corporate wellness is present in Mexico. However, it seems like it is imposed by the company on their employees, so collaborators perceive it as an extra work and not as an empowerment tool. Sometimes, companies see it as part of the job, too, because by law, they must comply with regulations related to the psycho-emotional well-being of their employees.
It is important for both parties to understand that learning about oneself can be part of professional life. Companies can be a great partner in employees’ self-realization, happiness, joy, health and well-being. Employers need to exploit their supporting role and employees need to realize that they can achieve their well-being goals with the help of the company. The relationship between them can go far beyond service provision and remuneration. Companies are living organizations that transcend economics. Therefore, building new interconnections can generate a greater impact on society, the economy and productivity.
In Mexico for example, we are very good at executing ideas, but the main problem is the lack of vision. There is still not a very good understanding of wellness. Wellness intends to empower, to speak about the potential of individuals and corporations, self-knowledge, transcendence and complete integration of what makes a person: economy, health, social relations, spirituality, among other factors.
According to the World Economic Forum, real wellness within a company promotes and retains talent, creates more productivity and collaboration and helps to reduce diseases and therefore decreases absenteeism.
We are trying to break down companies to successfully introduce the concept of wellness in the simplest way. There really is no need to force the concept, as this way of life and working is positive in all aspects. Leaders and CEOs are realizing this and are really dabbling into corporate wellness projects, instead of feeling overwhelmed by the initiative and deciding to just offer videos and meditations apps that have no impact on the employee.
The pandemic highlighted how divided the concepts of working and living were. While no one wants to work 24 hours a day, seeing work as just a provider of money rather than as a contributor to your well-being is a key stigma that the new corporate wellness wants to break.
Q: What is Alive Wellness Consulting’s approach to corporate wellness?
A: Alive Consulting targets companies that already have that open-minded approach. The company chooses clients that have compatible visions and before introducing a corporate wellness program into a company, we try to build a relationship with the people it is intended for. This enables us to create a program with the right approach that will have an impact on people and the whole company. Alive Consulting approaches collaborators to build a program with them, instead of imposing a program; not all companies are open to that.
With our personalized approach, we try to enhance the collaborator’s sense of agency, which means they have the decision to choose what they want to do with their life because they have the right tools and context to do it. A company that knows itself enough will allow employees to see themselves reflected in the company and will allow them to create and be more and more creative.
Q: How will the pandemic raise awareness about corporate wellness?
A: COVID-19 has proven that people with poor health are vulnerable to severe complications from the virus and even death. Seventy-five percent of the population suffers from a chronic disease, many of which can be avoided through healthy lifestyles.
When the outbreak spread globally, healthcare authorities started recommending things that we have heard for years: eating heathier, exercising or drinking water. Within the pandemic context, we can really see the importance of these habits. Moreover, we see how physical and mental healthcare are interconnected but often neglected and that each person has control over their health and well-being, without the need of medication.
With companies, we are focusing on how wellness can help to ensure productivity. Challenges for companies regarding human resources escalated from one day to another, especially among companies that did not have direct contact with employees. Now, we have companies asking their collaborators about anxiety, fear and many other mental health issues that maybe in the past they were not so open to bring to the table. Companies now have the chance to become a partner to their collaborators and ensure a life-long active quest for well-being.
Q: What are Alive Wellness Consulting’s near-term goals?
A: We want to generate alliances with companies that dare to really dabble into well-being. We want to encourage community within corporations and keep learning how to improve individually to reach corporate wellness. We want to help companies have a much more human and wider approach to well-being, emphasizing life values instead of just corporate values.
Alive WellnessConsulting is a strategy and planning consultancy focused on the new paradigms of Health and Wellness. One of its four divisions offers Corporate Wellness which builds personalized programs to achieve well-being and productivity within businesses with a complete mental, spiritual and physical health approach for collaborators.