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Why Prioritizing Quality Of Life Will Help Your Business Thrive

November 19,2018 16:18

Health care businesses are unique in various ways, but their emphasis on quality of life should not be one of them. I believe that all entrepreneurs and leaders should prioritize QOL not just for the people they serve, but their employees and themselves.



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“It is quality rather than quantity that matters,” says a quote attributed to Roman philosopher Seneca. While not referring to life, per se, these ancient words of wisdom persist to this day. Quality of life is a much-talked-about term that more recently earned the acronym QOL.
Quality of life refers to the general well-being of individuals and groups, and it is often measured with health and happiness as major components. As a health care entrepreneur, it is a standard I’m always seeking to improve, especially for patients. You may think this is a given, but you may also be surprised by the number of health care organizations that fail to make QOL priority No. 1.
Health care businesses are unique in various ways, but their emphasis on quality of life should not be one of them. I believe that all entrepreneurs and leaders should prioritize QOL not just for the people they serve, but their employees and themselves.
Here’s how business leaders can emphasize quality of life and why it will lead to better (that is, higher) quantity of business.
Keeping Customers (And Keeping Them Well)
Every business wants to keep its customers and clients happy, and the most popular ways to measure customer satisfaction include looking at sales trends and taking surveys. These methods can be misleading: Just because someone is buying more doesn’t necessarily mean they are satisfied or that the product or service is good for their well-being.
Many businesses are satisfied to give customers what they want instead of what they need, so long as they will keep coming back. But even McDonald’s realized that fast food, while addictive, needed to be healthier if it wanted to keep customers on board. This trend among fast foods, though not always sincere, shows how businesses are more inclined to care about the wellness of their customers. It’s no surprise, because studies show more customers care, too.
Branding campaigns can convince people of a lot, but today’s consumers are also armed with information technology that will help them find products and services better for them than yours, if need be. The only real way around this is to ensure your product or service really is the best for not just their satisfaction, but their quality of life.
At my company, the Allure Group, the comfort, happiness and health of my patients come first. We do this not just by providing care, but creating inclusive, welcoming spaces in our facilities. If all companies prioritized these goals, the resulting customer retention and brand reputation would reflect that effort.
Productive, Happy And Healthful Associates
It is widely recognized that good quality of life for workers correlates with happier, healthier, more productive associates. They are less likely to miss work or leave the company if all their human needs are being met in and outside of the workplace — something that can only happen if work policies and culture are wellness-centric.
This doesn’t have to mean company-sponsored yoga every Thursday (though there are certainly worse ideas). It means providing good health benefits, recognition and support, plus pay and hours compatible with a work-balanced life. Contrary to what some cutthroat industries espouse, less can be more if employees are revitalized enough to put in 100% on the clock. If employees are burned out, you can expect their productivity to plummet along with their mental health. You can also expect higher turnover and more hiring- and training-related costs.
A culture that emphasizes quality of life should also recognize and reward employees for great work. This is something I have always viewed as essential. I like to spend time in every department of my businesses so I can get to know my employees personally, let them know when they are doing a good job and even give out a spontaneous gift card or two when I see people going above and beyond. Little gestures like these can help improve employee quality of life as part of the bigger picture.
Leaders With Lives
If you want your company to prioritize quality of life, you have to practice what you preach. Yet, for many leaders, work is life, with little time left for family, hobbies, romance or anything else. Entrepreneurs, CEOs and leaders in all industries often have an "always on” mentality, and as a result report high levels of stress, isolation and depression (paywall).
Yet leaders who work too hard can be less effective, just like anyone else. In fact, overworked leaders (paywall) can be in even worse shape, especially if the stresses begin to color interactions with business partners, subordinates or even customers. As a leader, you need the energy and disposition to communicate effectively and positively as the face of your company.
Long story short, your quality of life is important to your company’s success, and there are many ways to prioritize it, even with a demanding job. For instance, I wake up around 4 a.m. so I can fit in some personal time to plan for the day. For me, quality of life involves faith and family, so I start my day by renewing my faith through prayer and spending time with my wonderful wife and children. I also make sure my goals are holistic instead of simply work-focused by writing down three priorities for both my personal life and business as the focus of my day.
Improving QOL in all areas
Just as quality of life includes a wide range of factors, from health to happiness to education to financial security, the areas in which this metric should be prioritized are many. In the business world, leaders will bring about the most benefits by improving QOL for customers, employees and finally for themselves. I think you’ll find more peace and progress when this shift occurs.
Forbes New York Business Council is the foremost growth and networking organization for business owners in Greater New York City. Do I qualify?

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