Many companies nowadays invest a lot in their wellness programs. After all, these programs have been proven to increase employee retention and satisfaction, which is a major advantage to any business.
If you really want to make a difference in their lives that will turn them into better employees, though, then you should teach them financial literacy. Consider how many of your staff and managers go to work unhappy or extremely stressed due to their personal financial woes?
A quick survey in your office will reveal that many of them are tackling debt, and some are still living from paycheck to paycheck. Helping them address these can significantly improve their well-being, and therefore their performance at work.
Understanding Financial Literacy
What is financial literacy anyway, and how do you determine whether someone is financially literate? Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to know how the stock market works or compute like an accountant. It’s simply about possessing sufficient knowledge to make sound decisions regarding budgeting your money, building emergency funds, tackling debt, and other money issues that most people encounter in life.
Consequences of Financial Illiteracy
Financial illiteracy is costing your company in more ways than you can imagine. Take, for example, an employee who constantly worries about their basic needs, such as food, rent, gas, and medicine. Living from paycheck to paycheck can induce anxiety and depression, which might then lead to health conditions like insomnia and digestive issues.
This might trigger a series of absences that put their department at a disadvantage or to lack productivity at work. That’s not to mention the medical care they choose not to get because they can’t afford it or have more urgent expenses to take care of.
Incorporating Financial Literacy in Wellness Programs
Introducing a financial literacy course in your wellness program doesn’t need to be vague or complicated. The trick to maximizing this investment is to determine what exactly your employees need to know. You may perform a survey or hold a meeting to gather the specific knowledge they’re interested in acquiring.
The next is to address these concerns through seminars, workshops, and books. You can target certain demographics in your companies, like parents and homeowners, since they have some of the biggest debts and obligations. It could be that they are severely behind their mortgage, or they haven’t invested in any insurance.
You’ll want a reputable financial guru or personal finance coach to help them answer important questions like “what is the coverage of the homeowners insurance?” or “how do I choose the best insurance for my house?”
Parents will need guidance on preparing for their children’s college funds, and young professionals might need insight into how to quickly pay off their student loans.
Since the pandemic has forced many employees to work remotely, you will want to consider having these courses via Zoom or giving them access to online courses you’ve purchased for them. Start a physical or virtual library where they can have their pick of financial books from reputable coaches. The more expert help they get, the better their chances of developing financial literacy will change their personal and professional lives.
Hiring a Financial Counselor
Improving your finances is a journey. There will be ups and downs, and even with adequate education, many will still fall victim to the wrong decisions. This is why it’s best to hire a financial counselor whom your employees can turn to for help throughout their journey.
One-on-one coaching can give them a better and more personalized approach to their financial problems. Moreover, it might help remove the stigma around debt and other money issues in your workplace. It isn’t the easiest thing to admit that you can’t get your finances in order, after all. The good thing is that the more they feel supported and cared for at work, the more motivated they will be to keep on doing their best.
Hiring a financial counselor is a big investment on your part, but it’s definitely worth it. You might find it more crucial than all the yoga and Zumba classes you pay for since your employees can afford them once they become financially fit.
Financial Freedom for Your Employees
No doubt, helping your employees achieve financial freedom will change their lives forever. They can learn many things that can help them in their personal and professional lives. The gratitude and camaraderie they’ll enjoy in the workplace will improve retention and productivity. This way, you can enjoy great returns for your investment in the long run.