It’s no secret that 2017 will leave many with mixed emotions. It was a year with both great tragedy and great triumph, and Predictive Health Partners can personally attest to experiencing both. However, 2017 will always have a special place in our hearts.
This was the year where it all began — a crazy idea to combine artificial intelligence and mobile engagement to solve a big health problem. An incredible amount of hard work, faith and determination led to the creation of a breakthrough in employee healthcare that we are excited to share with the world in the next few weeks. We think you’ll like it too.
But before we embark on 2018, please join us in a brief look back on the insight we discovered about ourselves and how it inspired positive change in the world.
Steve Hartman of CBS News’ On the Road is a masterful story-teller. He has a way of capturing the essence of the stories of the people he meets and turning their unique backgrounds into something we all can relate to. This feature on a family affected by recent hurricanes in Texas is no different. Hartman does a wonderful job of highlighting the joy of helping and inspiring others during this holiday season. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did.
On behalf of all of us here at Predictive Health, we’d like to extend our best wishes to you and your families for a joyful holiday season.
Since September, the Predictive Health Partners team has been working tirelessly to develop, test and fine-tune our intellectual property and business model. Predictive Health was one of the 18 statewide organizations selected to learn from top entrepreneurial minds through the University of Iowa Venture School. At the end of the course, our team was given the opportunity to present a business pitch to a panel of judges and compete for awards and prize money. After advancing to the final round of the competition, Predictive Health was presented with the Judges Choice award, winning $500.
The University of Iowa Venture School is a 6-week program that emphasizes real-world entrepreneurship and innovation based on leading edge curriculum taught by serial entrepreneurs. The program requires startups to develop and rigorously test business hypotheses. Predictive Health Partners, alongside other teams undergoing the process, “got out of the building” to listen to prospective customers, partners, and competitors, rather than relying on instincts and secondhand market research.
“We have found invaluable insight into the employee risk management market by not only asking the right questions, but asking them to the right people,” said Predictive Health Partners Founder & CEO Jim Lewis. “We have learned so much about the ‘pains’ employers are experiencing and how Predictive Health Partners can turn them into ‘gains.’ The Venture School curriculum has taught us what it takes to truly make a difference in the industry and change lives for the better.”
The Venture School not only accelerates the startup process, but is based on proven strategies for launching and sustaining a new business. New companies that have undergone this process have been found to have an increased rate of success – an astounding 20% higher chance of success than average.
The Predictive Health team will always be grateful to the University of Iowa Venture School for the instructors’ and mentors’ wisdom, as well as the strategies we have gained through this incredibly challenging but extremely rewarding process. Through 2,800 miles of travel and attending three national conferences, we interviewed 88 thought leaders and prospective customers. This research allowed us to validate and streamline our business model, contract with strategic partners and add to our team essential strategic advisors.
Although the process was rigorous and forced us to reevaluate our business model and goal multiple times, Predictive Health Partners experienced an incredible amount of growth and benefit through the Venture School. We are more confident than ever in our product and ability to positively impact the healthcare landscape.
Any wise employer knows that improving employee wellbeing is one of the most effective ways lower healthcare costs. However, far too many underestimate their role in employee health. As employees spend an estimated 35% of their waking hours working, employers have a key opportunity to take an active role in increasing employee health in the workplace. By creating the opportunities for and encouraging employees to engage in healthier behaviors during the workday, employers can see a significant difference in the health, happiness and productivity of employees. Here are some simple ways you can create a healthier workplace and a healthier bottom line.
Offer healthy options
Whether your workplace has vending machines or a fully-stocked fridge, ensuring that employees can maintain a healthy and balanced diet is crucial to both employee wellbeing and productivity. Start by swapping out some of the junk food offered for healthier alternatives, such as fruits or nuts. Choose healthier options when having food catered for meetings or events. If you’re willing to take it even further, start a workplace garden look into hosting an on-site farmer’s market by partnering with local growers and producers. Don’t be intimidated, though; even the smallest snack could make a huge difference.
Encourage employee exercise
One of the most common reasons cited for a lack of exercise is convenience. Employers can overcome inconvenience with this trendy tactic: bring the gym to work. Encourage employees to exercise throughout the workday; from their commute to making the most out of their breaks. Additionally, dedicating a space in the office to fitness is on the rise, growing in popularity among employees and giving you a competitive edge among your competitors. In fact, according to the 2012 Principal Financial Well-Being Index: American Workers study, on-site fitness facilities were perceived as the top perk among employees.
Minimize workplace stress
Stress is a normal part of everyday life. At its best, stress can be a driver to meet important deadlines and invest maximum effort to achieve success. At its worst, stress can erode self-esteem and cause serious health conditions; from depression and anxiety to cardiovascular disease and immune system suppression, unchecked stress has potential to ravage both physical and mental health. Employment is a major source of stress for many Americans, with one out of every four workers reporting that it is the primary cause of stress in their lives. Encourage your employees to take steps to reduce workplace stress or offer stress reducing amenities. This can range from stress-relieving tea in the break room to offering break-time yoga in the workplace. Even the smallest of steps can lower tension and increase productivity.
A workplace is at its best when employee morale is high and everyone is satisfied with their working conditions. It is in everyone’s best interest to contribute time and effort to create healthier working conditions and encourage workers to take advantage of healthy resources. By reducing stress and placing an emphasis on healthy, employers can create a healthier workplace, workforce and bottom line.