Help Employees Avoid Feeling Labeled

Posted by: 
Jeff Smith

Living with an illness, injury or chronic condition can be challenging enough for anyone. But, when you consider that many people also must deal with these conditions in the workplace, the situation may feel impossible.

At work, many employees can feel labeled by their medical condition, thinking that others — whether it’s fellow co-workers or managers — believe that they are unproductive or that accommodating them could be too costly. On top of that, they could also be dealing with other issues on their road to recovery; maybe they are experiencing financial issues or are having a bout of depression after a recent surgery.

Needless to say, there are a number of factors that could inhibit an employee’s recovery or productivity. Employers who want to help may not know where to start. That’s why selecting a disability carrier is so important.

Partnering for Productivity — and More

At The Standard, we believe that employees with disabilities or chronic conditions can be productive and excel in the workplace. As such, our solutions and approach to delivering them are designed around collaborating with like-minded employers to do what’s right for employees.

Working with a carrier that has a proactive approach to disability management can help you erase these unfair impressions, such as being unproductive or troublesome to accommodate, from others and provide practical assistance to help with an employee’s stay-at-work or return-to-work accommodation. A disability carrier also can be a great partner in helping to address health issues and minimize the loss of productivity and other costs associated with employees working through a medical condition.

Are you making the most of your partnership with your disability carrier? Here are a few ways you can work together to create a supportive environment for your employees who may be experiencing a medical condition at work.

  • Partner with our consultants. The Workplace PossibilitiesSM program has vocational, nurse and mental health consultants who have years of expertise in their respective fields to help with stay-at-work and return-to-work accommodations and plans. We can have consultants integrate into your workforce and be with you on-site, or be on-site at your location within a matter of days to help you identify the right type of support for an employee.
  • Consider pre- or post-claim support. Through stay-at-work or return-to-work assistance, Workplace Possibilities consultants tailor plans specifically for an employee to ensure proactive support is given to try and avoid a disability leave, or that he or she could return to work the right way and at the right time.
  • Integrate with other resources. Workplace Possibilities consultants work to integrate with resources from other carriers, including EAP, disease management and wellness programs to ensure employees are getting the most out of the resources available to them.

Although this is just the start of how a Workplace Possibilities consultant can work with you to help your workforce, considering how to focus your efforts in this area can help your employees feel supported, valued and, ultimately, more productive.