We all make decisions every day. Decisions about our personal and professional lives that impact what we do today and our ability to perform in the future. Sometimes, these are trade-offs and others, the right decision is clear, but one thing is always true; you can never make progress without effort.
Early in my career, I helped people near retirement make the most of their savings. Far too often, the discussions I was having were about subsistence and not security. We all know that we should save for retirement, but many people don’t. They make the decision to take a dollar today over two dollars tomorrow. Don’t get me wrong, there are situations where the dollar today is more important, but far too many Canadians are reaching retirement with little or no ability to support themselves. Education was always the answer put forth, but it’s impact was always minimal. There had to be a less reactive way to help people save.
My next role took me into the world of Health Benefits. What an amazingly reactive world this has been. The cost of a benefits plan is a reflection of the health of employees. The more medications that employees are taking, the higher the cost of a drug plan and the more likely the employees are to develop a disability. Still, employers blame insurers for high rates while doing little to help employees remain healthy which would actually impact their costs. The majority of the biggest problems facing benefits plans today are related to employee health, especially for illnesses such as Hypertension, High Cholesterol, Type II Diabetes and Depression. Benefits show employers the cost of inaction, but only when it’s almost too late to do anything about it.
For me, the decision was clear. I had to help my clients get out in front of these problems. Only by taking a proactive approach to education, programming and engagement can you impact future costs and stop being a victim of your benefits and retirement plans. So, my choice was to work with HCG, to promote Health and Wellness as the sustainable solution for employers and to help my clients prevent the issues that others have faced.
“Those who do not learn from history are condemned to repeat it.” George Santayana
Principal - HCG