Steph Ceccherini is the Wellness Coordinator for Workforce Wellness, a division of the Scott Lawson Companies (SLC). She has been a part of this family run business of about 50 employees for the past 8-years. The Scott Lawson Companies are committed to providing every client with a better way to prevent injury on the job, lower workers’ compensation costs, and improve the health and wellness of workers through a single partnership with their firm. With the cost of running a business growing exponentially, employers are increasingly seeking ways to control costs associated with worker health and safety. SLC’s integrated solution provides quality worker health and safety services, high-level workers’ compensation management, and customized wellness programs that achieve every necessary component in creating and maintaining the total health and safety of your workforce. With these tools and complete management commitment, every company can build wellness, improve health, and maintain a robust bottom line.
Steph’s degree is in Health Assessment and Promotion, a career path chosen due to the desire to maintain her own health, and to positively impact the lives of others. The certification most valuable to her career is the National Wellness Institute Certified Wellness Practitioner. The education and experience required to maintain this certification allow her to stand apart from others in the field. Other certifications include WELCOA Faculty, American Council on Exercise Certified Health Coach, American Lung Association Smoking Cessation Facilitator, and American Red Cross CPR/AED & First Aid Instructor. SLC has received the American Heart Association Fit Friendly Company award annually from 2008 - 2014.
Since her start with SLC, the workplace wellness industry has already seen some major changes, as has the Workforce Wellness program. Steph was an integral part of the design of “Steps to a Healthier Workforce,” the employee wellness program her team now implements for their client companies. It is a series of comprehensive and affordable employee wellness programs that help form healthy habits, and make a valuable impact.
The most successful intervention came from one of her client companies, who between 2012-2014 increased their participation from 202 to 256 employees and spouses. They had 184 participants take the Health Risk Assessment all three years. The most notable improvements of their unique cohort were:
During those years, Steph and her team also assisted this client with some environmental and policy changes to support their wellness initiatives. These efforts include becoming a tobacco-free campus, as well as providing a healthy breakfast bar daily for employees (options include healthy cereal, oatmeal, yogurt, and a variety of healthy toppings). They invite a local fresh market to come onsite regularly, and employees can choose to buy products using their “wellness bucks” (wellness program incentive). They also covered the cost of a local bootcamp class, and allow any of their employees to participate during the workday twice a week.
WELCOA's 7 Benchmarks have been imperative in designing, implementing, and measuring success of the Workforce Wellness programs. Steph works with her clients on an ongoing basis to drive culture change using each of the 7 benchmarks. She feels that providing a supportive environment is imperetive to the success of any wellness program. This cannot be accomplished without first obtaining CEO support, creating a cohesive wellness committee, and crafting a plan. The seven benchmarks are organized nicely as a "checklist" in making sure the bases are covered when designing a program.
Being a leader and role model in this industry doesn’t mean being perfect, but striving to be the best you, both in an out of work. As are many, Steph is a busy, full time working parent, committed to making the time for exercise, either at work (SLC generously allows 30 minutes paid time to exercise), or on her own time. She ran her first half marathon last fall when her son was 11 months, her proudest accomplishment in recent years.
To be a leader in this ever changing industry, it is important to maintain all certifications, attend conferences and trainings, and keep a constant pulse on what the environment looks like. Steph’s advice is to always think about innovative solutions to the challenges your clients face. The solution will never look exactly the same from one client to the next. It is okay to try something, find that it didn't work, and move on to try something new!
As a provider of workers’ compensation management, SLC has leveraged the Workforce Wellness program to provide smoking cessation services to workers’ compensation claimants that fall into a high risk category (measured by a comprehensive set of questions asked of all claimants). There is an inherent benefit to the injured worker if they are able to make a positive lifestyle change, and they may be able to recover more quickly and return to work sooner if they are able to quit smoking, or reduce the number of cigarettes they smoke. Over the past 2-years, 33% of the claimants who received smoking cessation support successfully quit smoking.
The biggest challenge Steph has experienced in the health promotion industry is navigating the overlap that exists between what is offered by health insurance companies, benefits brokers, and third party wellness program providers, such as SLC. Rather than all working together to create a comprehensive risk management plan, there is often competition for who delivers the service. There would be a lot more success if all groups would work as partners, rather than competitors.
In the coming years, Steph plans to find new ways to collaborate with other wellness providers to bring the most comprehensive, cost effective, and robust tools to the employer groups she works with. Her goal is to provide strategic health risk solutions to clients, more than “just” a wellness program.