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Expert Ideas for Employee Wellness

Our mission is to serve YOU—by producing exclusive training experiences that help to create and sustain successful wellness programs. Our wellness definition speaks to our vision for this year’s Summit—seeing the human behind the numbers. Explore the ideas you could uncover from our panel of industry experts.

Engaging wellness programs should address these things:


Beyond the absence of mental and physical illness, health is a feeling of strength and energy from your body and mind.

Esselstyn: Coronary artery disease is virtually non-existent in cultures which thrive on plant-based nutrition. Dr. Esselstyn’s methods are now proving to halt and even reverse heart disease and many chronic illnesses. Learn how through years of clinical application, research and strategy utilizing whole food, plant-based nutrition.

Esselstyn: Plant-based nutrition could be the seismic revolution in health which can end chronic disease. In this interactive “train-the-trainer” workshop you’ll learn how to pass on the skills needed to shop, prepare, and LOVE plant-based food at your organization.

Miller: Organizations face a growing health cost crisis that threatens to swallow profits and drain the vitality of their workforce unless we adopt a radically different approach to workplace health and well-being. This power session addresses this challenge with research by more than 100 corporate leaders and experts over a two-year project.


Feeling part of something bigger than yourself. Knowing that your work matters. Having purpose in your life.

Shackleford: Being socially responsible can improve recruitment, retention and the overall health of employees. In this session social impact experts will draw direct links between socially responsible business practices (including earth friendly facilities and charitable giving) and gains in employee wellness.

Woods: Imperative has led the largest global research on the science of what generates—and how to measure—individual purpose. You’re invited to access to Imperative’s Purpose Profile as part of your experience to reach your own North Star.


Knowing that you are safe from physical and psychological harm at work. Feeling secure enough to take calculated risks and show vulnerability. Free of concern about meeting basic life needs.

Hecht: Social determinants of health include things like access to healthy food, clean drinking water, reliable transportation, access to good education, safe housing, employment opportunities, and access to good health care. Improving health and wellbeing is not about a program, it is about building a movement.

Salva: Research has found that mothers are 79% less likely to be hired; 50% less likely to be promoted; make 20% less in salary for the same position; and held to higher performance standards than their peers. It is time to shift our mindset, disrupt the old paradigms, and architect innovative solutions to better support our moms in this modern era.

Zabawa: The concept of voluntariness is at the heart of the forthcoming changes to the ADA and GINA incentive rules that went into effect on January 1st, 2018. Understand the meaning of word “voluntary” in the ADA and GINA when designing wellness incentives for information collection.


Experiencing positive, trusting relationships with others. Feeling a sense of belonging, acceptance and support.

Eastman: Having strong relationships has been shown to be one of the greatest predictors of health and overall wellbeing as it strengthens the immune system, extends life expectancy, improves self-worth, increases a sense of purpose and helps to foster joy.

Harrison: When it gets harder to love, let’s love harder. – Van Jones. This quote embodies everything Kim stands for. Her big takeaway is that all great leaders have one thing in common: love is the core tenet on which they stand.

Lauritsen: Work has been defined in many ways over the years: a contract, a transaction, a value exchange. Explore how designing the employee experience through the lens of a healthy relationship will focus your employee engagement efforts for greater impact.


Feeling you have the support, resources and autonomy to achieve your goals. Succeeding at meeting your individual goals and work aspirations.

Rubleski: Financial “distress” is impacting employee productivity, presenteeism and engagement in critical employee benefits programs and wellness initiatives at the workplace.

White: Culture change can seem intimidating. However it does not always need to be an intimidating and costly process. This session will share several research-based interventions to apply right away in your organization.


Feeling like you are progressing in your career. Learning and being challenged to use and expand on your strengths.

Stringer: There are “nudges” in the built environment all around us that drive our behavior. This presentation shares some of the ways the built environment can positively affect decisions we make about our health.

Sykes: You’ll learn about the Habits that make the biggest positive difference to human performance, in life and at work–that are easy to start and hard to quit.

Wisdom Labs: Whether it’s a diet, a fitness plan, or a mindfulness initiative, long-term success with any wellness program requires some level of change—but the real impact happens when the organization stops thinking in terms of programs and invests in a culture of wellness. You will leave this session with next steps to set your organization on the path to a culture of wellness.


Viewing life with optimism. Feeling grateful and expressing appreciation. Feeling validated and encouraged.

Jernigan: Understand The Four Horseman of Resilience (four profound truths about resilience) and learn the secret of sustained resilience.

Smith: Activities and investments in employees that once seemed discretionary and “nice-to-have” are now key to supporting performance and engagement and reducing stress. Learn what individuals and companies are doing to address these challenges and why now is the best time to step forward as a leader for emotional and mental wellbeing in one’s organization.

Spiess: Overcome the fear of addressing mental health in the workplace and walk away with tools and strategies to start and sustain an effective mental wellness movement in your organization.

A new set of standards for employee wellness.

Learn more about WELCOA’s evolved 7 Benchmarks for creating happy, healthy thriving workplaces.
Download WELCOA’s Definition of Wellness