“I see hundreds of high-level professionals who are brilliant, achievement-oriented and accomplished, but at the same time exhausted, depleted, depressed and demoralized.  In the pursuit of a great career, they’ve compromised their health and well-being.  …Sacrificing your health and well-being demonstrates your lack of prioritizing yourself as important, failing to understand that you must care for yourself before you can be of true service to anyone else, your organization, yourfamily or your employer.” ~ Kathy Caprino for Forbes



Picture this. I’m at a large consulting firm and meeting an executive client for the first time, I turn to greet her and notice immediately that her eye is twitching so wildly that she can’t even make eye contact with us.  What we learn is she was just notified that she would be traveling out of the country the next day on business and her housekeeper just reported that the washer broke mid spin cycle.  So, the clothes she needed for the trip are submerged in 15 gallons of soapy water. The icing on the cake is that the housekeeper doesn’t speak English.  I explain we will have a Spanish-speaking team member call the housekeeper and ask her to take the wet clothes to the laundromat to wash them.  Meanwhile a member of our team headed to the house to check the warranty and manage the washer repair. When I mentioned we would pick up voltage converters and healthy snacks for her trip on the way, I saw a tear roll down her face.  She said nothing.  I opened my arms and gave her a big hug. 

Dare we admit that we have been that executive a time or two?  Perhaps you are surrounded by people just like her in your workplace.  What can we do to create a healthier environment? 

· Stop the fire drills – everything can’t possibly be urgent.  Set realistic deadlines. Give employees ample notice when a change to a daily routine is required: travel, working late, taking on additional responsibilities. 

· Create an environment that fosters open communication.  Employees must feel there is a safe place for them to express their struggles and challenges.

· Give them resources to help themselves. Whether the need is finding reliable childcare, homework help for their teenager, or the errand running services of TimeSquared, provide them the assistance they need. 

Employees sacrificing their health and well-being can have permanent health consequences and a domino effect on virtually every aspect of their lives.  From relationships to work quality to productivity and even the quality and quantity of sleep they can receive – everything is negatively impacted. You know the struggle is real and your employees are worth the investment.  I hope you will consider these changes within your organization.  After all, your people are your greatest asset and they are worth the investment!

 “If your body is shutting down, diseased or broken down from the way you work, rapid change is needed.” ~ Kathy Caprino from Forbes