Heidi McAllister

Heidi McAllister

By Heidi McAllister, Coaching Services Manager, RedBrick Health

We all know that investing in employee health is a way to manage healthcare costs, but many programs overlook important partners—spouses and other family members—who not only often have higher healthcare costs themselves and nearly always have a strong influence on the health behaviors of the participant. Our research shows that social support is not only a predictor of meaningful engagement, but also a catalyst for more meaningful engagement. We recommend including spouses and significant others as often as possible and focusing on the family unit for optimal behavior change.

Whether support comes from a family member, a co-worker or a health coach, leveraging the social sphere is smart. We’ve embedded social features in our products and services and it’s paying off with better health outcomes for participants. Our RedBrick Journeys® (digital coaching) include a myriad of topics that support behavior change through small steps and social connections. RedBrick Track® and RedBrick Rally®, our activity tracking and social challenges solutions, bring co-workers together for healthy competition. And RedBrick’s health and well-being coaching focuses on building relationships over time, meeting people where they are and helping them get to where they want to go. Our research has even found that our Next-Steps Consult, a concierge-style single session focusing on educating, motivating and engaging individuals, has increased and sustained meaningful engagement even without increasing the rewards for participation in activities.

Support sometimes comes from family and friends, and sometimes we need help from experts. In a world of high-tech, “high-touch”—in the form of human-to-human connection—cannot be overlooked, as it can be just the right thing to get started on the right path.

This post is part of the blog series of What the Best Do Better, our most recent study on health engagement. Stay tuned and you’ll gain knowledge on what top-performing organizations are doing differently through successful program design patterns.

You can view and download the What the Best Do Better eBook here.

You can also download our most recent infographic here.