Our working foundations are in the content of two books:
Zero Trends: Health as a Serious Economic Strategy, and
Shared Values – Shared Results: Positive Organizational Health as a Win-Win Philosophy
These two books when taken together, take workplace wellness to an advanced level. The ideas and total content, when implemented bring about zero trends and involve a vision of shared values and shared results. The results for both employees and organizations are consistent with a win-win philosophy. The basis of our knowledge combines supporting research and science with meaningful solutions for implementing positive health as an organizational and employee strategy.
Both books give substance to our thoughts, research findings, and practices from many academic disciplines. Learnings from our and learnings from many practitioners, allow us to incorporate organizational experiences into practical solutions to unravel some of the complexity of health. Employee and organizational values, results, and vision are merged into multiple and sustainable initiatives.
The 2009 book Zero Trends: Health as a Serious Economic Strategy was the capstone of over 30-years of research, including evidence that:
- changes in costs follow changes in risks,
- the business case for maintaining low-risks
- high-risk and medium-risk reduction,
- validation of the “don’t get worse” strategy,
- health risks travel in clusters
- validation of the health management strategy through risk transitions
- validation of the health management strategy through costs transitions, using the cost data from the same individuals used in the risk transitions
- changes in costs follow changes in risks
Zero Trends illustrates the specific employer efforts needed to create a supportive and sustainable environment, culture and climate, illustrated by four maturity models for each of five structural organizational categories:
- do nothing
- Model 1: add specific content related to the values and interests of the employees and management.
- Model 2: add additional content related to other life-skills related to civility, anxiety, relationships, and individual and organizational issues.
- Champion Company: add specific content related to quality-of-life, a best place to work, and a caring organization.
The validation evidence in the book raised the question, “What else impacts the health of individuals and the health of organizations?” That question led to many more questions and seven more years of research, conversations with professionals in the field and reviews of relevant content from diverse fields.
The implications and evidence for the book, “Shared Values-Shared Results: Positive Organizational Health as a Win-Win Philosophy” are the result of our learnings during those seven years plus the research evidence Jennifer Pitts (co-author) brought to the thinking and writing. Between the evidence and suggestions in these two books, discussions with many practitioners and several researchers in related fields, we addressed the question, what impacts the complexity of health? From the content we were able to provide a roadmap to help individuals and organizations to realize their full human and organizational potential.
We added functional organizational categories to the structural names for each of the categories from Zero Trends:
- Senior Leadership: Engaged and Committed Leadership.
- Operational Leadership: Positive Environment, Culture, and Climate.
- Self-Leadership: Self-Leadership and Positive Individual Health.
- Rewards and Recognition: Positive Personal Motivation.
- Quality Assurance: Measure and Communicate What Matters.
Integrating the evidence and suggestions in Zero Trends and Shared Values-Shared Results” should be on the agenda of every individual and leadership team to make a meaningful impact on the vitality of their organization, as well in the advanced course content in every class in higher education.