Workplace Resilience for Productivity
The Learning Center at Red Willow

In a study conducted by the Milken Institute, An Unhealthy America: The Economic Burden of Chronic Disease, researchers identified and ranked seven chronic diseases in order of prevalence.  The list is topped by pulmonary conditions, followed, in order, by hypertension, mental disorders, heart disease, diabetes, cancers, and stroke.

Adding data specific to Missoula to the national data paints a slightly different picture.  According to the 2014 Missoula County Community Health Assessment, Missoula has a lower inicence of and death rate from cancer, heart disease, and diabetes than national averages.  While this is great news, what Missoula does struggle with as significant problems are emotional disturbances, especially depression and anxiety.

A study funded by the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation found that adults in Missoula County experience 3.5 mentally unhealthy days out of 30 compared to the national average of 2.3.  Distressingly, the data also shows that the suicide rate in Missoula County is nearly twice the national average.

There is an economic burden associated with Missoula's levels of emotional disturbances.  In addition to the cost of treatment and absenteeism, there is also the cost of prsenteeism—when an ill employee shows up for work and does not perform well, damaging both their productivity and that of those around them.  Some sources estimate that this cost is up to fifteen times greater than absenteeism itself.  According to an article printed by Corporate Wellness Magazine, "...depression is estimated to cost employers between $17 and $51 billion each year with 200 million workdays lost...."

Enter the intervention!  Resiliency can be defined as a person's capacity to handle difficulties and bounce back from them.  In his article from the HR Times, David Lee divides the quality of resilience into four categories:

  1. "The ability to 'not sweat the small stuff'."
  2. "The ability to perform well under pressure... i.e. when it's 'Big Stuff'."
  3. "The ability to respond flexibly and adapt to changing circumstances."
  4. "The ability to bounce back from defeat and disaster."

Recent research suggests that increasing resilience is "... a good way to reduce health care costs and increase vitality and productivity in your organization."  The great news is that learning the skills necessary to increase resilience are easy to learn and practice.  The skills training is relatively inexpensive.  As part of our program, we interview company leadership to assess individual organization needs and set up a training schedule that is convenient for you and your staff.  The training component is 2 hours per week for 8 weeks.  We also include a printed manual as well as audio resources for each participant.  We are available to present this training on-site at your workplace and can work with varying group sizes.

Whether you employ a handful of people or have hundreds working for your organization, we all want to lead vibrant, healthy organizations.  Our Workplace Resiliency Training program allows you to give your staff the gift of the ability to optimize potential and give yourself the gift of an organization that is a pleasure to run.

Lead Instructors: Christine Lustik, Ph.D. and Kathy Mangan, M.S.

For more information, please contact Kathy Mangan at (406) 721-0033.

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