Monday, March 16, 2015

Weber and Silverman's "Memo to Staff: Time to Lose a Few Pounds"

Weber and Silverman's article for the Wall Street Journal has lots of good psychy/stats information (here is a .pdf of the article if you hit a pay wall). I think it would also be applicable to health and I/O psychology classes.

The graph below summarizes the main point of the article: Certain occupations have a greater likelihood of obesity than others (a good example of means, descriptive statistics, graphs to demonstrate variation from the mean). As such, how can employers go about increasing employee wellness? How does this benefit an organization financially? Can data help an employer decide upon where to focus wellness efforts?

The article goes on to highlight various programs implemented by employers in order to increase employee health (including efficacy studies to test the effectiveness of the programs). In addition to the efficacy research example, the article describes how some employers are using various apps in order to collect data about employee health and encourage the employees to become more mindful of their own health decisions.

I think this article also opens up the discussion of whether or not this is an organizations business as well as whether or not BMI is an accurate measure of wellness.