Thursday, December 7, 2017

Begin an EAP-driven Proactive Injury Recovery Program to Support Employees Injured on the Job

The research is clear--better empathetic communication and engagement with injured workers can reduce workers' compensation costs associated with their recovery.

HR and EAPs should collaborate on this construct to get employees back to work sooner, reduce lawsuits, help prevent related employment claims, identify more troubled employees at risk of re-injury, and address secondary personal problems of injured workers that sabotage recovery.

This is not rocket science. Get excited, man! Follow 25 injured workers in 2018 and engage them in an "EAP Proactive Recovery Program." Then, compare your results--using 6-8 metrics--absences, treatment costs, re-injury rates, legal claims, reduced HR hassle time, speedier return to work, employee turnover, reduced overtime, etc.--to the same costs associated with the last 25 compensable injuries that were not similarly followed.

You should see a powerful return on this program. Then show up at an EAPA conference or share your results at a SHRM conference. Even better, attend a insurance or risk managers conference and promote employee assistance programs for the management tools they actually are, and should be, to help more workers and reduce costs. You might spark a needed true-to-the-spirit Core Technology EAP renaissance. 

Here are a few ideas to consider for your project:

1. Consider having injured workers engage with the EAP. A self-referral, or even a formal referral after injury is appropriate because the referral is based upon a job-related issue--injury. Another source of referral for such a program is the workers' compensation managed care nurse--get this individual on board with the program. 

You will discover this to be relatively easy because you are actually making their job easier and giving them improved stats. (I have done it, or I would not be writing about it.)

2. Have the EAP assess the psycho/social and environmental issues, and intervene with those that could contribute to a prolonged absence. This is a research-proven cost driver for WC injuries--the longer out, the less likely the return to work.

3. Institute EAP follow-up with medical doctors. They often have information helpful to a better EAP assessment.

4. Identify workers affected by depression and resolve employee concerns and complaints related to communications with the boss, HR, etc. (This reduces the likelihood of employees involving attorneys and suing the organization See: http://blog.reduceyourworkerscomp.com/2013/07/injured-workers-hire-attorneys-due-to-lack-of-employer-communication/)

5. Provide assertiveness training to help injured employees avoid peer pressure to engage in prohibited work activities that can cause re-injury when they return to the job.
Return to work programs are great, but many include risk of re-injury if they are located near the environment associated with the original injury. ("Come'on Joe, help lift this lumber! Your back is fixed by now! Gimme a break!")

6. Conduct an EAP assessment for untreated alcoholism. (WC injuries are three times higher for alcoholic workers.) Also have the EAP discuss opioid use issues because many of these folks are at risk for addiction, especially those with back injuries.

These few activities require trust, a commitment to confidentiality, and services that only an EAP with its core technology and legally-backed confidentiality assurances can offer. (Think again if you still believe #800 insurance EAP hotlines can engage to this degree with employees and key stakeholders.)

So, "who you gonna call" to reduce workers' compensation costs? Try an effective EAP with a programmatic approach to WC injury and recovery--or get one in place for 2018.

Increase your supervisors referrals free for the next three months, no catch. No invoice, No Bill, no hassle, no nothin'. - Fax this form, and cross out the price on it. And mark "Give it to me free, Dan."  Put your email on the form. I don't need your name.

Sign up for free EAP resources at WorkExcel.com

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Free Holiday Stress Tip Sheet for EAPs

Okay, everybody has been waiting for this. Here is it.

There were at least a few national news stories this year discussing the health effects of loneliness. Researchers see it as a growing problem, and some believe it is the new "obesity" issue because of its adverse impact on health--both physical and mental health. Given the strong association between the holiday season and family get-togethers, a tip sheet topic on being alone for the holidays looked like a good one to send to you. Go to this page to download this year's free, reproducible, editable, and Web usable workplace wellness tip sheet on holiday stress entitled, "Alone for the Holidays."
WorkExcel Tip: When we create a Web course, we take a document you might have or a PowerPoint, separate all the text into separate moving parts for a slide program, animate it, professionally narrate the text, time it with images, and add handouts, test questions, and certificate or course validation element. When this is completed, we can then create a DVD format, a video that will play on any device, and of course the Web course.

This brochure provides more information. Finally, create your own library of web courses, engage employees and family members more effectively, add to your capabilities, make a bigger impact, brand everything with your logo, never pay another licensing fee, own your library, have no off-page links to a provider/vendor customer go off and explore, and compete more effectively.


I could go on, but what it is on your computer right now that would be awesome outreach in the form of a Web course. Fax this form to 843-884-0442 for a quote.


Daniel Feerst, BSW, MSW, LISW-CP
Publisher, WorkExcel.com

P.S. If you place a link to WorkExcel.com in some isolated location on your Web site, it greatly helps keep this free service going. Thanks in advance.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Share Productivity Laws with Employees as a way to Entertain and Make a Point with Your Employee Newsletter

Have you heard of Parkinson's Law? It was first coined by British author and historian C.
Parkison's Law states the amount of time given for a tasks is  used completely
Northcote Parkinson, writing for The Economist in 1955.

The law states that "work expands to fill the time available for its completion.” Have you experienced this phenomenon?

A better question is have you seen employees who are given an assignment with plenty of time to complete it, but still manage to only get it to you barely on time, or even late? This is the Parkinson's Law in action.

Your employee newsletter is a magical tool to educate employees about productivity principles like this one within a workplace wellness context. Improving productivity, reducing stress, sharing the information with others, and having a chuckle or two are exciting reasons to educate your employees about productivity laws that cleverly (more so than others) define our lives. 

A bit of research on productivity laws discovers that there are actually nine different productivity laws commonly cited in time management literature and personnel management training. You've heard of Murphy's Law. It happens to be one of these nine.

In the future, I will share more about these laws of cause and effect with you, but the employee newsletter article idea I would like to recommend is composing a simple article on this topic right now. Make it about 100-120 word range. Remember, it is my recommendation that you never have employee newsletter articles that extend beyond 250 words, and keep most in the range of 120-150 words.

When you research these productivity laws, you can make a strong impact with your employees as I have done here taken from a newsletter article I wrote several years ago.

Have you heard of Parkinson's Law? Simply stated, the law states that "work expands to fill the time available for its completion.”  That’s the observation made by the British author and historian C. Northcote Parkinson, writing for The Economist in 1955. The few who are able to overcome this productivity-killing phenomenon are able to work so efficiently that they seem to have magical powers. Here’s how to join this elite group: Shorten the amount of time required to complete a task and correspondingly increase the urgency of completion by promising it sooner. You will develop more efficient work habits with this intervention, and you will find more free time in your life that you struggle to find right now. A simple way to work with this principle is to take a kitchen time and set it for say, thirty minutes and tell yourself you will finish a project before the bell goes off. The move to your next task and repeat the strategy. Subscribe to Frontline Employee -- a newsletter you can distribute to the workforce, rename and call your own, and  finally have an on-time, highly visible EAP newsletter for improved utilization and program preservation.


Thursday, November 9, 2017

Improve Morale and Decrease Risk When You Provide Diversity in the Workplace Awareness Education

If you are not providing diversity awareness education in the workplace, you may want to offer about 10-12 minutes of this content during the year . It is a lot easier to do than you think, and a lot more welcome than you might imagine. It's all about the approach (the educational and non-threatening approach we use.)

The benefits of diversity awareness include reduced risk of workplace violence, higher morale, improved communication, and most importantly, employees who behave with tolerance toward others while not feeling threatened by the education and awareness information they receive.

You also acquire employees who help maintain a respectful workplace by not acting as bystanders to abuse. It is a very synergistic topic that has multiple layer effects for organizations. Reducing the bystander effect is really key to more positive workplaces. I may produce a PowerPoint on this topic alone.

See the full unabridged program we offer here. Just scroll and click the video you will see half-way down the page.
This program is editable, "brand-able", professionally narrated, and available in DVD, PowerPoint, Video, or a Web course. That makes it good for collecting certificates of participation as proof you took "due care" in the event a legal claim ever happens for something like discrimination. (By the way, I always recommend arm-twisting your insurance company into a discount for reducing behavioral risk exposures. Most states do that already for a drug-free workplace policy. A topic like this one should be no different. See what happens. Let me know.)


WorkExcel Tip: When you purchase products from WorkExcel.com, you can download them, edit, amend, delete content, and acquire them in any of four different formats. All web courses include test questions, handout(s), certification, and you own web course entirely. Web courses or videos operate from your Web server. They upload in minutes--and they are totally self-contained with embedded PDF handout(s). We can even insert additional handouts you might want to distribute.

Explore the other links to your left in this email. Phone me with questions. I answer my own phone.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Workforce Trends in 2018 EAPs Should Undertand to Take the High Ground for Program Growth

Forbes has issued predictions for workplace trends in 2018. Interesting . . .50% of the trends relate directly to human resource factors.

The predictions are heavy on issues concerning employee wellness, employee productivity, and reduced behavioral risk that can lead to productivity and economic losses.

Here are the HR related trends:

1. Leaders will encourage more human interaction. Companies will continue to promote their workspaces and design them to facilitate interpersonal relationships between employees. See more.

5. Financial and mental wellness gets prioritized. With 78% of Americans living paycheck to paycheck and student loan debt at over $1.4 trillion, workers are struggling and it's affecting their health. See more.

6.) Employee burnout causes more turnover. Employees are burned out from working longer hours with no additional compensation, while companies are posting record profits. See more.

8. Companies will take diversity more seriously. Employees must become more aware, tolerant, and buy into the value of diversity. See more.

10. The aging workforce. About three in every four Americans plan to work past retirement age and almost two-thirds said they will continue to work part-time. New challenges for HR. See more.
Download the full trends article here.

Are you a workforce professional -- HR, EAP, Wellness, concerned manager? Consider the skills, resources, and opportunities you represent or have to make a difference in 2018 and beyond.


Go Direct to the Forbes Article

Workplace Diversity Photo of the Week for EAPs

EAP Photo of the Week
Click Link to See Caption

See WorkExcel.com's Diversity in the Workplace Awareness Product


Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Opioids Abuse Education Awareness and Prevention

EAP presentation product for educating employees about the opioid addiction crisis.