Shawn M. Connors is president of Hope Health. He believes behavior change requires a mix of both art and science. He founded the International Health Awareness Center, Inc. (IHAC) in 1981, which focuses on the importance of communication in positively affecting workplace cultures. Recently, he worked with a talented team to develop a workable, realistic health communication system, empowering thousands of workplaces and community-based clients to communicate more effectively with new media. Shawn has earned the respect of marketing professionals and health educators alike.
A "perfect storm" of trends occurred about 10 years ago in the music industry, changed the landscape of that business forever. A fresh wave of consumers suddenly had a new host of internet tools and a profound sense of empowerment.
Most wellness communication had been riddled with corporate speak and jargon instead of clear, concise language for busy employees. Before you draft emails, newsletters, posters remind yourself of probable realities about your audience and message.
Most wellness committees deliver frequent messages about food-tips sent with good intentions and prescribe what to eat. Employers who receive this communication are conditioned to believe they'll feel better if they simply pay attention.
Wellness communication is often an afterthought, viewed by organizations as a necessary byproduct of their wellness plans. Most companies try to figure out ways to elicit employee participation in only after they design or adopt their wellness programs.
Offering health-related programs that align with corporate strategies and employees goals and aspirations is smart. The foundation for behavior change and real progress is creative, persuasive communication that gets people to notice the programs in first place.