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Creating Executive Commitment & a Culture of Health. Gary M. Billotti Leader, Health & Human Performance, The Dow Chemical Company. HERO Forum for Employee Health Management Solutions September 18-20, 2006 Chicago. Remarks. Dow Background Culture Concepts The Dow Experience Summary .

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creating executive commitment a culture of health

Creating Executive Commitment & a Culture of Health

Gary M. Billotti

Leader, Health & Human Performance, The Dow Chemical Company


Forum for Employee Health Management Solutions

September 18-20, 2006


  • Dow Background
  • Culture Concepts
  • The Dow Experience
  • Summary
the world s largest chemical company
The World’s Largest Chemical Company
  • Sales exceeding $40 billion
  • 165 manufacturing sites in 37 countries
  • Changing global demographics brings new challenges
    • China
    • India
    • Brazil
    • Russia
    • Middle East
more about dow
More About Dow
  • Founded 1897 in Midland, Michigan
  • Strong Midwestern roots and values
  • 43,000 employees around the world (22,000 U.S.)
  • 54 percent of all employees are in manufacturing roles
  • Major U.S. locations in smaller communities
  • Ratio of male to female is 3 to 1
  • Environmental Health & Safety vs. Human Resources
dow essential elements
Dow Essential Elements
  • Mission - Why We're HereTo constantly improve what is essential to human progress by mastering science and technology.
  • Vision - What We Seek to BecomeTo be the largest, most profitable, most respected chemical company in the world.
  • Values - Who We AreIntegrity and Respect for People
  • Strategic Themes – How We Accomplish our Strategy

Driving financial discipline and low cost to serve

Setting the standard for sustainability.

Building a people centric performance culture

Investing in strategic growth

organizational culture descriptions
Organizational Culture Descriptions
  • The integrated pattern of human behavior that includes thought, speech, action and artifacts….
  • The prevailing behavior patterns… and reflects what is acceptable or not acceptable, what is important or not important.
  • “How things get done around here”


Source: Joel Levey, PhD, Michelle Levey, MA, IHPM, 2001

levers that impact individual behaviors
Levers That Impact Individual Behaviors
  • Rewards/recognition
  • Communication
  • Structure of programs and services
  • Organization health culture
  • Individual beliefs and attitudes
  • Personal health status

Source: Benefits Roundtable 2003 Health Behaviors Survey

organizational health culture
Organizational Health Culture
  • In addition to incentives, communications, and program design, the Roundtable’s 2003 Health Behaviors Survey tested the influence of different cultural elements on health-related behaviors.
  • The Roundtable’s analysis shows that some organizational health culture elements (such as caring about health and open communications) outpace other elements (such as visible senior management support and team-based work) in terms of participation influence.

Source: Benefits Roundtable 2003 Health Behaviors Survey

the dow experience
The Dow Experience
  • Design
  • Communication Strategy
  • Leadership Involvement
  • Programs and Services
  • Health Services Staff Culture
  • Vendors and Providers
the dow experience12
The Dow Experience
  • Design
    • Business Case
    • Principles
    • Integrated comprehensive approach
the business case
The Business Case
  • Total Economic Impact related to Employee and Retiree Health likely exceeds $750 million/year for Dow.
  • Keeping US health care benefit costs in the lower end of the trend estimates could save Dow as much as $0.07/ share in 2008.
  • Many health care experts have estimated that a third of current benefits expenditures may be spent on unnecessary or inefficient care.
  • Most experts agree that 30 - 50% of health care conditions and illness could be modified by preventive health interventions.
  • Significant legislative and regulatory actions are developing and pending which will impact health care, particularly in the US.
the dow health impact opportunity
The Dow Health Impact Opportunity

The opportunity is to design and implement a Dow Health Strategy that supports an improved financial position relative to the economic impact from health AND creates a climate of support, engagement and satisfaction on the part of key stakeholders

total economic impact of health

Employee Medical (US) 14%

Global Presenteeism 48%

Retiree Medical (US) 19%

Other Admin 13%

Global Absenteeism 6%

Total Economic Impact of Health
dow study overview
Dow Study: Overview

Achieved 63% participation

No $ Incentive

  • Research study
  • 12,000 employees
  • Three Survey Tools
  • Email / web based administration
  • Data merge with comprehensive extant data
  • Characterize presenteeism, functional status
  • Special focus on chronic illness
guiding principles
Guiding Principles
  • Employee advocacy
  • “Total Health” approach
  • Links to business strategies and priorities
  • Investment approach
  • Cross-functional
  • Priorities determined by impact on both direct and indirect costs
  • Data driven
the importance of one
The Importance of One

You arx a kxy pxrson. Although my writing machinx is quitx old,

it works wxll, xcxpt for onx kxy. At first, you may think “if thx othxr kxys

work wxll, nobody will rxalizx that onx kxy is not working wxll.

Howxvxr, it is apparxnt that only onx kxy not xffxctivxly working

can wrxck thx wholx xffort. You may say to yoursxlf: “wxll, I am

just onx pxrson. Nobody will rxalizx if I don’t do my job as wxll as I

can”. But, this is xxactly thx diffxrxncx, bxcausx a succxsful

txam nxxds thx activx participation of xvxryonx with thx bxst

possiblx capacity. So, nxxt timx you think you arx not important,

rxmxmbxr my old writing machinx.

You arx a kxy pxrson.

health and human performance
Health and Human Performance

“Most companies have operated on the belief that high performance is exclusively linked with cognitive and intellectual capacity. Data and research have proven that for companies to achieve breakthrough growth and success, they must also focus on all of the elements of human performance – the body, the emotions, the spirit - consider the person as a whole.”

Harvard Business Review: January 2001

Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz





















Advice and counselling


Health promotion training:




life/work balance

pressure management

Work organization:








Occupational HealthDoctor, Nurse


External Agency

Human Resources

Occupational HealthManagers

Senior Managers

Line Managers

Human Resources

Is this a Health Issue or a Management Issue?





Source Dr E Teasdale and Dr R Heron AstraZeneca


Dow Chemical

Health & Human Performance





Industrial Hygiene




Health Promotion


Occupational Health

Employment Accident Benefit


Organizational Effectiveness

dow health strategy vision
Dow Health Strategy Vision

We optimize health, human performance, and the long-term value for Dow by offering an array of health programs and services for employees, retirees, and dependents as part of being an employer of choice.

vision elements
Vision Elements


c o m m u n i c a t i o n

dow health strategy metrics
Dow Health Strategy Metrics
  • Health Care Costs
  • Health-related Productivity (Absenteeism & Presenteeism)
  • Health Status / behaviors
  • Health Risks
  • Quality
  • Advocacy
  • Healthy Culture

1) My work environment enables me to maintain good health

2) Work-related stress does not interfere with doing my job well

3) Dow has a sincere interest in the health and well-being of employees

4) I am held accountable for doing my work in a manner that is safe//

5) People in my work area are protected from health and safety hazards.

6) The leader I report to enables flexible and innovative solutions for managing work and personal life

the dow experience25
The Dow Experience
  • Design
  • Communication Strategy
communication strategy
Focus on shared responsibility and behavior

Emphasize the benefits to the individual – both financial and health wise

Integrate messages into existing communications and processes, i.e., expand safety culture to health and safety culture

Recognize that health issues are very personal, therefore a heavy-handed approach will not be effective

Sample objectives:

Create a corporate culture that supports people being healthy

Extend the “culture of health” to include families and retirees

Communication Strategy
communication strategy 2005 2006

Health Strategy Communications Update

Communication Strategy 2005-2006





  • Unclear on scope, rationale, and nature of change
  • Unrealistic expectations
  • Rumor mill activity
  • Seeking information
  • Realization of the effort and complexity
  • Uncertainty and confusion
  • Fear of the unknown
  • Concern over personal impact
  • Recognition of personal benefits
  • Value to organization is understood
  • Comfort achieved
  • Willing to use technology
  • Change internalized
  • Supporting behaviors demonstrated
  • Improved performance



Market & Sell Case for Change

Solicit Input and Educate

Encourage and Support

Reinforce and Reward

  • Ensure that the compelling business reasons for change are clear to all employees
  • Set expectations and begin preparing people to change
  • Allow for two-way communications opportunities which allow for resistance and questioning
  • Clearly define change
  • Motivate people to let go of the old way of doing things
  • Influence people to try to accept the new way of doing things
  • Success stories
  • Reinforce the desired behavior in the changed organization
  • Promote the internalization of new behaviors to establish new culture
  • Encourage sustained acceptance and internalization of the new technology
  • Celebrate success


dow health message map
Dow Health Message Map
  • Employee Health – Protection of health for workers, human performance optimization, financial performance
  • Public Health Impact – Product stewardship and community citizen responsibilities, financial, educational/ intellectual, physical/ security
  • Products for Health Impact – Meeting important societal human health needs
the dow experience29
The Dow Experience
  • Design
    • Integration and development of principles
  • Communication Strategy
  • Leadership Involvement
    • Leading by Example
    • 2015 goals – Health Index
    • Get Fit with Bob
    • H H Dow Academy
organizational health culture leaders
Organizational Health Culture: Leaders

While visible commitment from senior management is not as strong a driver of an individual’s participation in prevention, senior management does have a significant role to play in forging a corporate culture in which employees believe that the organization cares about their health and well-being.

Benefits Roundtable of the Corporate Executive BoardJanuary 2004

top leadership
Top Leadership

Leading By Example, a CEO-to-CEO initiative sponsored by the Partnership for Prevention, focuses on the business priority of supporting health at the worksite.

a strategic approach to building a culture of health
A Strategic Approach to Building a Culture of Health

“I believe we need a sustained focus on prevention to maintain and improve the health of our people. Prevention has the power to make a real and lasting difference in our individual quality of life...

…Our analysis shows that prevention can improve both our direct and indirect health related costs. Our profit potential is inextricably linked to the capability and performance of our employees….

…We have recently strengthened our commitment to this effort by adopting a strategic approach to building a culture of health with prevention as a major pillar in our overall plan.”

Andrew N. Liveris, President and CEO

2015 sustainability goals
2015 Sustainability Goals

Local Protection of Human Health and the Environment

By 2015, Dow will achieve on average a 75 percent improvement of key indicators for EH&S operating excellence from 2005 baseline and community collaborative sustainable commitments.

By year-end 2015:

  • Dow will achieve an injury and illness rate of 0.08 per 200,000 hours …
  • All sites combined will have fewer than 75 leaks, breaks and spills …
  • All sites will reduce process safety incidents and the severity rate …
  • Dow will reduce the motor vehicle accident (MVA) rate for all Dow EE’s ..
  • Target sites will have achieved site-specific goals addressing needs such as security, waste generation and emissions, maintaining and improving employee health, and resource conservation.
get fit with bob
Get Fit with Bob!

.... and get healthy

“While we are all working to get Dow "fit" for the future, we have another opportunity -- to get "fit" for ourselves. I'm initiating a program for myself, and need some company. Our Health Services group tells me that 85% of employees at our Texas site are either overweight or obese. That tells me that some of you may want to join in. We need to make some progress and I want to invite you as a leader to help get us started. Some of us need to lose, others need to maintain. Let's do this right. The plan is outlined below . . .”

June 2005

hh dow academy
HH Dow Academy
  • "Dow must offer an extensive leadership development strategy to nurture talent for corporate-critical roles, we need to start building our next generation of top leaders today, and we need to equip them with what it takes to successfully meet complex future challenges."
  • The program is designed to enhance participant's strategic and global leadership skills through action learning.
  • Top Leaders at Dow (V3 and above)
  • “Energy for Performance” Executive Course – Human Performance Institute
the dow experience36
The Dow Experience
  • Design
    • Integration and development of principles
  • Communication Strategy
  • Leadership Involvement
    • Leading by Example
  • Programs and Services
communication e health
Communication: E-health
  • Good Health for the Whole Self
    • Global
    • Brand – builds trust through consistency
    • Intranet site and Internet– web-based self service
    • Coordinated with Benefits




Personal Influence

Problem Focus

Social Support

Emotional Detachment

Stress Management: Measurement Domains


Individual Differences


Job Satisfaction

Organisational Satisfaction

Organisational Security

Organisational Commitment

State of Mind


Confidence Level

Physical Symptoms

Energy Levels




Organisational Climate

Personal Responsibility

Managerial Role

Home/Work Balance

Daily Hassles

Sources ofPressure




History – Corporate Smoking Policy

U.S. Policy – First U.S. policy implemented in 1993

  • Owned by Human Resources
  • Supported by Health Services

Current U.S. Policy - Implemented January 1, 2003

  • All Dow property and meetings are smoke free.

Case Management Overview

Program Objectives

  • Rapid return to health and return to work
  • Effective and efficient use of services
  • Highly satisfied participants and Dow Management

Key Program Features

  • Global Operating Discipline from broad engagement (HR, EAP, Worker’s comp, employees, supervisors…)
  • Voluntary
  • Health Advocacy Model
  • Early Identification, Triage and Action
  • Site Pilot (Midland Operations) 2000-2002
    • A Six Sigma project used to create the “model” program
health surveillance
Health Surveillance
  • 90% participation in 2004 globally
  • 95% of employees responded that health assessment is a valuable service provided by Dow
  • Built from the existing safety culture
  • Includes counseling referral & follow up
overweight obesity study
Overweight & Obesity Study

Partner with the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute,

Cornell University, Medstat, and the University of Georgia . . .

  • Study Purpose: Design, implementation and evaluation of innovative and evidence basedapproaches to organizational/supportive environment interventions aimed at reducing the prevalence of obesity and overweight among Dow
  • Twelve sites participating
  • Evaluation documentation of interventions that impact overweight and obesity at the workplace .
  • Employees have access to healthy food choices
  • Access to physical activity
  • Site health goal (in alignment with Site MI Plan)
  • Work group alignment to the site health goal
  • Tracking and reporting (to Gary Veurink) of site and work group goal activities
  • Leadership learning/training
  • Site leadership and cross-discipline team recognition
the dow experience44
The Dow Experience
  • Design
    • Integration and development of principles
  • Communication Strategy
  • Leadership Involvement
    • Leading by Example
  • Programs and Services
  • Health Services Staff Culture
  • Vendors and Providers
health services staff culture
Health Services Staff Culture
  • Global Integration
  • Prevention Focus
  • Focal Point Roles
  • Performance tied to health improvements
  • Cross functional involvement
  • Professional Development
the dow experience46
The Dow Experience
  • Design
    • Integration and development of principles
  • Communication Strategy
  • Leadership Involvement
    • Leading by Example
  • Programs and Services
  • Health Services Staff Culture
  • Vendors and Providers
vendor or partner
Vendor or Partner ?


1: one that vends: seller


1: one who shares: one or two or more persons who play together in a game against the opposing side: one of the heavy timbers that strengthen a ship’s deck to support the mast.

dow health partner summit purpose and objectives
Dow Health Partner SummitPurpose and Objectives


  • To convene key Dow health-related service providers for an intensive review of Dow's Health and Human Performance efforts, and to determine how each provider plays a role both independently and interdependently in helping Dow achieve its objectives. This effort will enable a more efficient and effective approach to providing services to enhance the health of the Dow community.
  • Business Case provides the platform
  • Effective Communication is critical
  • Integration across functions and with “partners”
  • Alignment with Business Priorities
  • Champions at all levels
  • All strategy and implementation approaches impact organizational culture whether intentionally or unintentionally.
  • Heart–Centered Leadership: Susan Steinbrecher & Joel Bennett
  • Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience: Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
  • The Corporate Athelete: Jack Groppel
  • The Power of Full Engagement: Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz
  • Seven Habits of Highly Effective People: Stephen Covey