Applying Quality Management (QM) Principles To Wellness Committees

Their is no disputing that the heart of a successful wellness program lies in a dynamic committee.  And, many important QM principles can be applied to the structure and function of your wellness committee.

Almost 75 percent of wellness professionals surveyed said they have a wellness committee for their organizational programs, and 80 percent said the committees are important for the success of their workplace wellness efforts, the survey revealed.  The survey was conducted by the Wellness Management Information Center.


“The feedback the committee members provide is invaluable,” said a wellness program manager.  “They represent  the employee population and are very plugged in to what they need and want from a workplace wellness department.”

“Wellness Committees: Best Practices and Proven Strategies for Success”
“A well-run committee is the all important key to a well-run wellness program”
Workplace wellness committees are one of the most important elements
of a successful workplace health promotion program. Get step-by-step practical how-to details. Learn the pitfalls to avoid.

Even if you formed a committee long ago, is it living up to its full potential? Does the committee have:

  • A good representation of the target audience, i.e., blue-/white-collar, males/females, all levels of management, ethnicities, age groups, etc.?
  • The necessary training to contribute to program success? This should include a periodic event targeting the committee members’ personal wellness needs, providing the background knowledge to talk intelligently about relevant issues to the members they represent, and generally motivating members to be excited about wellness.
  • Input into the program’s “strategic” plan, selecting which services are offered, how they are offered, how they are marketed, etc.?  Do program organizers listen to, and value, committee feedback? This is a crucial component to customer-driven programs.
  • Assigned responsibilities (beyond attending meetings) that contribute to program success? Do members assist in putting on programs? Do they actively solicit participants? Do members actually talk to the people they represent to determine what services they want? Do they help with research? Are the members publicly recognized for their contributions to the program (preferably by management)?
  • A written agenda and meeting minutes from which they work? Are members held accountable for agenda assignments? Regardless of how many meetings it takes to resolve a problem, do the minutes allow a reader to track the problem each step of the way to resolution? If the committee does not have secretarial support, make putting out the agenda and minutes a rotating responsibility among the membership. Or have someone assigned to the committee for that express purpose.
  • Access to senior decision-makers? When issues about the health and wellness climate of the workplace are beyond the committee’s authority to address, do senior decision-makers respond to these concerns?
  • The ability to remove non-performers in their membership? Are appointments to the committee official, including a letter with clearly defined responsibilities sent to each new member?

Press key decision-makers to include health promotion on the agenda of routine high-level meetings.

For instance, if you work for a school district, there are periodic gatherings of all the school administrators.  Get access to these forums and provide the membership with your meeting minutes.

Highlight any referrals to them or issues that are beyond the scope of your committee to handle … at least without their help.  Provide after-action reports so they can visually see your successes.

Take these opportunities to solicit feedback from senior managers. They represent a very important customer; and if management isn’t excited about what you are doing, the rest of your audience will not be excited.







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