I asked Emmett, our sales leader, to share his thoughts about financial wellness. Emmett comes from decades of experience in the financial industry, working with clients to help them manage their investments. I don’t think you can work for decades without having seen it all. Who better to write about financial wellness than someone who has spent so much time helping clients with their finances, through economic and political turmoil.
Snowfly helps wellness programs be successful. Our clients see higher engagement for a longer period of time because our gamification and programs are designed for that. If you have tried a wellness program at your office, whether that is a general employee wellness or a physical health wellness or mental health wellness or a smoking cessation program or whatever, and it hasn’t worked well, give us a call. We’d love to talk about how the Snowfly incentives and performance model works.
Without further ado, here’s what Emmett had to say about financial wellness:
Wellness is a delightfully vague but nice sounding way to refer to things that are good for you while not being preachy about all the things that lead to poorness. NOT eating a half-gallon of ice cream before bed is probably just as important as DOING things you should, like taking a walk or eating your vegetables. However, research shows rewarding people for doing good things is more effective than scolding them for being bad. Rewarding positives has better long-term impacts on organizational culture than punishing negatives.
Successful financial wellness programs would focus on things you should do. After a quarter century of experience working with individuals on their own paths to financial wellness, I can say there are a lot of right answers… and obviously a lot of wrong answers. Interestingly, as important as employers are to the equation of financial health (because they are usually the primary source of income, and where one spends a majority of one’s waking hours), it may surprise you that in 25 years employers were MIA in the financial wellness discussion (other than reviewing 401k investment options).
That companies offer a 401k and/or healthcare benefits is fantastic! It really is! How much more fantastic would it be to also sponsor a financial wellness program that fully encourages employees to engage with the program? That is, in addition to having a high participation rate, employees are educating themselves to make better and informed decisions.
I am not suggesting organizations take the role of financial advisor… far from it. I am suggesting they get smart about encouraging employees to make their own financially healthy decisions, and becoming more educated in their personal finances. Perhaps providing incentives to put that new-found knowledge to work.
I can tell you from professional experience, the way to get most people to invest the time and energy necessary to actually study and critically select investment and healthcare options is NOT plopping a telephone book-sized prospectus, or policy contract, in front of them with 127 choices each. Nor is it to put a guy like me in the front of a boardroom droning on and on about “efficient frontiers” or “out-of-network deductibles.”
At Snowfly we have been engaging with teams and employees for over twenty years. We know how to motivate and incentivize people to “WANT to want to” do things that are good for them and their employers. We do this based on human psychology and behavior change, with tools like peer and manager recognition, intrinsic and extrinsic incentives, and gamification. Our tools and methods are designed to increase engagement and performance.
We have month-to-month contracts because we know what we do works. This is also apparent in our average customer tenure of over six years – and the fact we are a 90’s “dot com” company that is still around!
Emmett knows what he’s talking about. While you can’t talk to him to get professional financial advice, you can talk to him to figure out how to increase financial wellness in your organization. When you team is less worried about how to pay for a tooth ache or to replace a tire, they get to focus more on your organizational objectives.
Ready to chat?