Ten insights for building workforce resiliency today.

Tracy Layney, EVP and Chief Human Resources Officer at Levis Strauss & Company, spoke on the Milken Institute panel on building workforce resiliency. During the presentation, she mentioned that internally they refer to benefits as offerings now.

It is often the subtle changes that change how employees think and feel about a company. Those subtle changes are reflected in the operational and financial results of your company but without a resiliency lens are not attributed to the results.

Wellness Works

Wellness Works Canada is a certification program for health and performance professionals. After each module, participants are asked to reflect on the learnings.

As a participant, it gave me the opportunity to reflect on my strengths and weakness as a leader, the toxicity of some cultures that I’ve worked in over the span of my career and the missed opportunities to measure wellbeing initiatives in my own work as a healthcare finance executive.

How workforce resiliency gets overlooked

I was writing about improving operating room turnover times when I realize the missed opportunity to improve workforce resiliency. Facility Administrators often monitor metrics such as physician productivity, financial performance and patient satisfaction scores. Those metrics are a reflection of:

1/ Staff training and development: Clinical staff are well trained on all of the medical supplies and equipment during morning staff meetings. They also understand the importance of the inventory management system and support it by returning unused supplies to the right spot.

2/ Inventory Management: The Inventory Manager coordinates with the sales representatives, ordering supplies and reviewing preference cards to ensure everything needed for the cases is available as needed.

3/ Staffing: Having sufficient staff for the cases and ensuring that everyone is supported to function at their highest level of human performance.

Measuring workforce resiliency

The missing measurement is employee satisfaction. Most organizations wait for a problem to be reflected in the absenteeism, presenteeism, healthcare and recruiting costs rather than surveying employees to proactively solicit feedback.

If other organizations aren’t doing it, why should your organization? Plain and simple, it’s a shortcoming. One that can be easily addressed to ensure employees are empowered to function at their highest level of performance, satisfied with their job and prepared for the future of work and retirement. The company benefits financially by having a competitive workforce and by becoming a desirable place to work.

Ten insights for building workforce resiliency

Ten insights distilled from the Milken Institute panel presentation on building workforce resiliency:

1/ Offer a suite of solutions to meet the array of employee needs

2/ Encourage micro steps to engage employees and their families in healthy habits

3/ Shorten meetings to 25 minutes to provide a break between meetings

4/ Lead with empathy to de-stigmatize use of mental health services

5/ Encourage use of healthcare benefits and ensure all employees are accessing care.

6/ Work with healthcare providers to provide whole person care

7/ Steer employees to the right type of insurance plan for their needs

8/ Disclose the use of AI to build trust with employees

9/ Prepare employees for the reality of retirement including age, savings, work and planning

10/ Address burnout with leadership training for potential and existing managers

Why start with an employee satisfaction survey?

Nothing is static no matter how much we wish it weren’t so. Keep your fingers on the pulse with employee satisfaction surveys to prioritize the right resiliency initiatives for your company. And remember, subtle changes make a big impact without a big budget.

Surveys and solutions

If you’re interested in enhancing your company’s health and performance initiatives, please reach out to me. I am open to new projects in Canada and the United States.


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