Published July 20, 2021
10 minute read
The 2021 Well-Being Trailblazer Awards was cohosted by Archetype Solutions Group and The Wellness Council of America (WELCOA) on July 14th. The event was created to honor and celebrate well-being companies that have designed innovative products and services that have made a measurable impact on the lives of employees.
After considering dozens of applications and interviews, The Well-Being Trailblazer Award Committee selected four Trailblazer Awardees: Unmind, LearnLux, Peerfit, and Wellview, based on their groundbreaking missions, innovative products/services, and great impact on employees. All four of these companies are offering unique well-being services with powerful intentions behind them.
Over the last month, our four Trailblazers have participated in roundtables with brokers, insurance carriers, and healthcare providers where the conversations were focused on how vendors, and all players, in the well-being space can adapt and improve their work and offerings to boost employee engagement in well-being programs.
This culminated in the inaugural Well-Being Trailblazer Awards Ceremony where the CEOs of all four companies were interviewed by thought leaders with experience in workplace well-being. At the end of these interviews, the audience voted for one of these companies to be the 2021 Well-Being Trailblazer People’s Choice Award winner. This award went to Peerfit for their incredible work in connecting people over physical fitness. Continue reading below to learn more about the important concepts that were covered throughout the ceremony by each company.
Unmind – Making Mental Health Treatment Proactive and Individualized
Unmind’s approach to mental well-being is based upon seven aspects of personal health. Each aspect has unique resources and focus through the lens of prevention, early intervention, and reactive care. They have used extensive industry research to create tools, programs, and exercises to improve mental health within and outside the workplace.
Ramsey Alwin, President, and CEO of the National Council on Aging, interviewed Dr. Nick Taylor, Co-Founder and CEO of Unmind, in the first interview of the ceremony. Their discussion focused on the meaning of mental health and how it has changed throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and the increase in focus on mental health.
As Dr. Nick Taylor said, “it was not that long ago that when people thought about mental health, they actually thought about mental ill health.” That is to say that mental health was primarily thought of as something that should be treated instead of worked on proactively. This is one of the foundational issues that Unmind is working against through their view that mental health is something that all individuals experience throughout their whole life, and it is something that should always be thought about and improved.
The Unmind Index was mentioned as one of the tools Unmind has created to help people measure their mental health, and thus evaluate and monitor it over time. Using these results, Unmind can recommend their members to different mental health resources before they develop a serious issue and need more rigid care.
A different line of thinking than what is typically discussed on the impact of COVID-19 on mental health also came about. Obviously, COVID-19 has changed the way people live and lead to higher degrees of isolation. However, one thing that came out in the interview is the positive impact that the pandemic has had on creating a space for people to discuss their mental health. Dr. Nick Taylor shared that learning and open conversations about mental health are becoming more common, which makes it crucial that tools are available to improve mental health.
LearnLux – Providing Financial Advice and Resources to Everyone
LearnLux is a financial well-being service committed to helping individuals understand their finances and plan for the future. This is done through interactive, education models that are designed for people in all stages of life and work. They also offer on-demand access to professional advice from financial planners.
Rebecca Liebman is the Co-Founder and CEO of LearnLux and shared that it was created through her experiences working on financial technology products in Kenya and her discovery that 90% of Americans do not have access to fiduciary guidance because they do not meet the asset minimum. Danielle Cohn, the Vice President of Business Development and Startup Engagement at Comcast NBCUniversal Lift Labs, interviewed her on how LearnLux is democratizing access to financial planning.
A recurring theme throughout the conversation was that monetary worries and a lack of financial planning impact all aspects of individuals’ lives. Mental health, physical health, and quality of life all are worsened when people are worried about their finances and do not have a plan for the future. This means it is crucial that employers prioritize their employees’ financial wellness, because when employees feel secure then they will be more focused on work and engaged.
LearnLux offers financial planners that are ethically obligated to do only what is in the best interests of their members and do not offer outside services or make finances any more complicated than they must be. Rebecca Liebman shared that they provide retirement planning resources, but also move beyond that to help people in all stages of their life feel more comfortable with their finances. This is accomplished by removing the income requirement associated with most financial planners and providing resources and guidance for employees of different levels and ages.
Peerfit – Creating an All-Inclusive Fitness Community
Peerfit provides fitness benefits that are directly included in health plans and HR benefits packages by giving employees credits that can be used at a wide variety of studios and gyms within the network. They also offer individual subscriptions that allow clients access to the Peerfit network and lower reservation costs at member facilities. All of this is achieved with a focus on bringing people together over physical fitness to make it more appealing.
The interview between Dr. Ed Buckley, Chairman and CEO of Peerfit, and Smruti Rajagopalan, Head of Strategy at Million Dollar Round Table, spoke about how to make physical activity as attractive as it is important. As Peerfit strives to reach a million covered lives by 2022, they look to provide all of their members with physical activity programs, classes, and opportunities that connect them with others and that they look forward to.
Dr. Ed Buckley shared that “the number one reason people get into and stay in physical activity is the social component.” This is the basis behind Peerfit which allows co-workers and all members to connect through classes and fitness offerings. While COVID-19 seemed like a hurdle, they came out of it stronger by focusing on how to adapt their offerings to fit in the virtual world as seamlessly as possible. With the isolation of the pandemic, continuing to allow their members to connect was incredibly important to Peerfit.
Another topic that was discussed in the conversation was one of Peerfit’s new offerings, Peerfit Move. The program is designed for seniors and focuses on finding specific classes, both in-person and virtually, that are targeted at older generations. Social connection and physical activity are often overlooked in the care of older adults, but Peerfit works to provide both through one service.
Lastly, they touched upon the fully-funded model that Peerfit works under to ensure that all their members have equal access to the best fitness activities and that cost is not a barrier. Dr. Buckley shared that users are not incentivized to exercise when it seems like an additional cost to them. Peerfit allows its members to improve their physical activity without worrying about the price.
Wellview – Providing Customizable, Preventive Care On-Demand
Wellview is a health benefits company that strives to simplify the way people interact with healthcare services. They take a holistic approach that combines physical, mental, emotional, and financial wellness. This is achieved through a digital platform that provides members with care profiles and connects them to physicians both digitally and in person.
James Story, Co-Founder, and CEO of Wellview was interviewed by Dr. Scott Cawood, CEO of WorldatWork, to discuss how Wellview engages members in proactive care. James Story stated that Wellview offers a unique combination of technology and human experiences to make sure that care is both easy to access and the highest quality possible.
These dual focuses have led to Wellview’s impressive 99% satisfaction rate and 10% reduction in employer health care spending by increasing the extent to which people receive preventive care and continue to remain involved in health programs.
Story touched on employees’ need for a different definition of wellness which is broader and encompasses all aspects of their health. At Wellview they believe that removing barriers is key to helping people take better care of themselves and part of this is providing resources, digital interactions, and in-person interactions that means users can access healthcare when and how it is most convenient for them.
Over time, Wellview has developed to integrate all aspects of healthcare by providing resources and specialists across medical disciplines. James Story shared that COVID-19 has been a catalyst for the industry in terms of humanizing healthcare and emphasizing its role in everyone’s life. The conversation wrapped up with James Story and Scott Cawood agreeing that the health system must look beyond their view of patients and consider the lives and beliefs of the people they treat.
Continuing to Redefine Well-being Moving Forward
The four conversations between the thought leaders and Awardees all brought up important aspects of well-being that are too often ignored. Through their treatment of physical, mental, and financial wellness, all of these trailblazing companies are changing the way that users are engaging and ensuring that employees are given access to well-being resources constantly, and not just when issues arise.
Following the interviews, the audience was invited to vote for the 2021 Well-Being Trailblazer People’s Choice Award winner. There was competition among all of the companies, but Peerfit came away with the win. Their work to connect people and bring a social component to physical activity while removing the price component is an exciting way of looking at fitness.
As the workplace healthcare landscape continues to shift and develop with physical reintegration following COVID-19, companies like our four Trailblazers will be leading the charge in helping employees to find their optimal work-life balance and make sure their quality of life is its highest every day, and in the days to come.