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Healthy Companies Outperform Others

A recent study says that companies concerned with workers' health are better off.

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The next time your boss asks you to stay late, tell him it might cost the company. A new study in Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine demonstrated that companies that build a culture of health, well-being, and safety in the workforce could yield more value for their investors. In other words, healthier companies make healthier amounts of money.

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The study was conducted from data of companies who received the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine's Corporate Health Achievement Award (CHAA), which recognizes the healthiest and safest companies in North America every year. Researchers tracked an initial, theoretical investment of $10,000 in publicly traded CHAA-recipients from the mid-1990s to 2012 and found that award-winning CHAA companies outperformed the S&P 500.

“Our results strongly support the view that focusing on health and safety of a workforce is good business," said study authors Raymond Fabius and R. Dixon Thayer. "Engaging in a comprehensive effort to promote wellness, reduce the health risks of a workforce, and mitigate the complications of chronic illness within these populations can produce remarkable impacts on health care costs, productivity, and performance.”

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So business owners, take note: Your employees need to be healthy—and you need to encourage them to be healthy—so that they perform better. And workers: Talk to your bosses about health concerns. Overworked? Yeah, who isn’t? But if it’s a problem, it needs to be addressed for both your own well-being and the company’s.

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