The more employers I talk with, the more I hear the challenge of finding the right balance between encouraging and supporting employees to make healthy lifestyle choices and getting too much into “their business.” This dilemma is understandable. Even the most well-intentioned individuals can overstep boundaries and cause feelings to be hurt, or even worse, privacy to be violated.
However, I can’t think of any organization that would give employees carte blanche opportunity to spend any amount of money they want on products or services for the business and still expect to stay in business. Yet, that’s what employers do when they provide a product, a.k.a. insurance, for their staff and fail to stress the importance of good stewardship in how that product is “spent.” It’s akin to letting employees purchase unlimited printers because the ink runs out.
If the insurance you provide for your employees has become so expensive that you have had to minimize the benefits (ie: higher deductibles) or shift the cost to the employees, effectively lowering their compensation, then it’s time to start figuring out a way to get involved in “their business” because now, it is your business.