Create Employee Business Teams To Enable Weight Loss Success

Work associates weight gain is now a business cost issue.


We are in a national weight gain crisis where two thirds of Americans are overweight. The cost of weight gain includes increased need for health care and more absenteeism. Work associates weight gain is now a business cost issue.

The business question is what to do on such a sensitive and personal topic as individual weight? This the third of four part series that address this question. The last article outlined where to begin.  This article outlines best practices for using work associate led teams to promote, and achieve, sustained weight loss.

The Power Of Teams

Teams are hugely powerful vehicles for changing business culture. Research now points to teams as being equally powerful in helping individuals achieve weight loss success. One of the most telling research on the power of teams to influence weight loss success comes from a 2009 Shape Up Rhode Island weight loss competition.

The key finding of this research was that the teams that succeeded in losing at least five percent of their original weight felt their teammates played a large role in their weight loss success.

Five Steps For Creating Teams That Enable Individual Weight Loss Success:

The following are five proven steps for forming work associate teams to enable individual weight loss:

1.  Senior Management Engagement.

Teams are more likely to success when senior management is engaged. This does not mean senior management leadership. It does mean senior management dedicating resources to enable team formation and success. It does mean senior management’s encouraging attention.

The goal for senior management’s engagement is to provide resources, attention and performance recognition.

2.  Volunteers. Team building is a pioneering process.

It is best done by motivated volunteers. Teams are less likely to success when they are comprised of work associates who feel they have to participate rather because they want to participate. This is especially so for an issue as personal as human health and individual weight.

The great news is that if senior management opens the door to work associates volunteering to participate then they will. Walmart did this by offering their work associates the opportunity to volunteer to work on teams focused on either their individual health issues, a green work project or a charity project.

The vast majority volunteered first to work on their individual health issue.

Next- Steps 3-5