It’s Time to Redefine Wellness


The Wellness Council of Indiana’s Chuck Gillespie recently had a column featured in the new U.S. Chamber Foundation report, “Healthy Returns: The Value of Investing in Community Health.”

A simple Internet search can show why the wellness industry is at a crossroads. In today’s market, the definition of “wellness” is based more on which classification best fits a person’s specific need, want, or ability, or a vendor’s specific product or service. Wellness is sometimes tied to chronic disease management, fitness, nutrition, weight loss, clinical health services, tobacco use, and behavioral therapy just to name a few. However, workplaces and communities that use an economics-based approach to wellness have proven to be the most successful at creating a culture of health and well-being. Read more in the report on page 16.


Wellness Proves to be Hot Topic

Chuck Gillespie, Wellness Council of Indiana program director, was "on fire" during a recent Policy Call discussion with Chamber members. I say on fire because Chuck offered excellent, easy-to-remember wellness advice for all.

It started with the fact that wellness, according to Chuck, has "gone from a nice thing to do to a stratgic business strategy." Well said, and important to remember. A few additional highlights:

  • Three key questions everyone asks: Where do I begin ?; what are others doing ?; how do I measure what we’re doing? The Wellness Council and other resources have the answers to help
  • "Keep it simple." Good advice to remember no matter the situation
  • Replace the word "health" with "healthier" (as in trying to become healthier than you were yesterday); in addition, sub "active" or "movement" for the word "exercise" and its negative connotation
  • Not enough emphasis is placed on the fact that wellness and safety should be tied together
  • Four key words for success: consistency, leadership, planning and promotion

Learn more about the Wellness Council. And if you’re looking to enhance your wellness efforts, purchase the Indiana Employer’s Guide to Workplace Wellness.

The next Policy Call for Chamber members on Nov. 11 will feature Indiana congressman Marlin Stutzman. Details coming soon online or call (317) 264-3793 to register.

Well, Weller and Wellness

I’m glad blog headlines are not subject to strict English guidelines. But on to the business of the day.

If you’re in the wellness world (promoting it within your company, offering products or services to others, or simply interested for personal reasons), read on. If you’re not, maybe you should be so read on anyway.

There is a wellness trifecta going on at the Indiana Chamber — and we want you to be able to take advantage of the opportunities.

  • As announced earlier, the Wellness Council of Indiana became part of the Chamber at the beginning of this year. Chuck Gillespie ([email protected]) is the executive director and he’s working with many of the longtime volunteer board members to expand wellness programming, benefits and certifications throughout the state. Chuck can fill you in on the details.
  • The Chamber’s BizVoice magazine has been publishing wellness columns and roundtable discussions for more than five years. The upcoming July-August issue will be largely dedicated to wellness stories, programs and initiatives from throughout the state. You won’t want to miss it; and if you’re one of those in the wellness business, it’s a great way to advertise your wares. Jim Wagner ([email protected]) will help you take care of that.
  • Finally, the Chamber is partnering once again to produce the 2011 Employee Health and Wellness Summit. It’s September 27 at the new JW Marriott in downtown Indianapolis. Agenda details are still to come; sponsorhip opportunities are another great way to get the word out. Jim Wagner will help you in that area also.

As Gillespie often writes, says, who knows maybe sings at times: "It’s good to be well!"