Partner, Kestria Canada & USA:
'CWOs are tasked with creating an enterprise-wide culture of wellness. To do this in a complex, hierarchical or cross-functional environment requires a blend of medical expertise, strategic and visionary thinking skills and an exceptional leader with excellent listening skills, strong empathy and sensitivity to others.
Wellness is not just a one-size-fits-all solution to be implemented with a mix of gym discounts, yoga classes, mindfulness training and social activities. All these things are helpful but must be addressed systematically and linked to the company’s DNA and be part of a real vision within a changing society. This type of position must be associated with at least a 3-to-5-year plan to avoid pulling the plug too quickly and losing any associated credibility and attractiveness.
Integrating Wellbeing AND Firm Performance: The CWO is responsible for creating and maintaining a system-wide culture of well-being by working to develop and maintain this culture and ethos. This means integrating each employee's professional, personal, physical, and even financial well-being and embedding this into the larger business strategy.
Employee wellbeing has typically been the province of the overstretched HR team, a department that desperately wants to do more but often finds itself constricted by time and workload. HR teams have a great deal to offer when it comes to transforming workplace culture, and the ideal future setup would be CHROs (Chief HR Officers) and CWOs working in unison.
A CWO can drive existing services further, leverage and open the door to other services, spur meaningful innovation, and provide an evidence-based approach to meet wellness needs.'