New Offering for Employers and Health Plans Revolutionizes How People Think About Money and Alleviates the Top Stressor
Boston, September 9, 2016 – meQuilibrium, the leading resilience solution for total wellbeing and employee productivity, unveiled today a new Financial Wellbeing offering to address overwhelming employee stress around money. The launch comes at a time when fear and anxiety caused by money is negatively impacting the workplace, with as many as 59 percent of employees feeling disengaged at work due to financial stress. The good news is that building resilience helps reduce financial stress. The top 25% most resilient individuals in meQuilibrium’s program are half as likely to report excessive financial stress compared to the 25% least resilient.
Building on meQuilibrium’s clinically-validated resilience-training program that is rooted in addressing a person’s overall wellbeing, the Financial Wellbeing solution employs an innovative approach to reducing financial stress. Based on proven science, the offering leverages a unique blend of cognitive behavior therapy and applied mindfulness to target the root cause of financial stress—the thoughts, feelings and beliefs that drive decisions and behaviors when it comes to money. Users gain financial freedom by addressing their money mindsets, attaining a greater ability to reach financial goals and understanding the wants that drive them to never feeling like they have enough.
In recent years, there has been a rise in the number of self-powered financial planning tools centered around helping people become more financially literate: how to plan for retirement, best practices for investing and the basics of saving money. But financial worry, which weighs heavily on many, is largely left unaddressed despite the fact that, regardless of income, savings in the bank or overall net worth, everyone struggles with money in some way.
“People bring their whole selves to work, including their worries and stressors. When money worries distract, they affect our performance and curtail our ability to thrive,” said Jan Bruce, CEO of meQuilibrium. “There is plenty of top-notch information about financial planning, but it’s hard to get to the root cause of why our money habits aren’t improving. meQuilibrium addresses this as part of our differentiated approach to whole person health. We’ve developed the Financial Wellbeing solution to supplement popular financial literacy programs by guiding users to understand and effectively manage their money concerns and stereotypes, regardless of how much they make, save, spend or want.”
An analysis of the meQuilibrium user population found that financial stress is one of the top sources of stress, ahead of health and job stress. meQuilibrium’s evaluation found finances to be a stress trigger in 62% of users, up from approximately 40% two years earlier. meQuilibrium’s data show that virtually no one is immune from financial stress:
- While 77% of individuals making $45,000 a year reported high financial stress, 56% of those making $125,000 a year are also similarly stressed.
- More than 70% of Millennials report significant financial stress, but more than half of users in every age category report similarly high levels of financial stress.
- Just over half (56%) of individuals with less than a high school education reported significant financial stress, and about the same level reported among those with a Master’s degree or more.
The offering was developed with financial expert Brent Kessel, author of It’s Not About the Money and one of the top 250 financial advisors in the U.S., according to Worth magazine. His company, Abacus Wealth Partners, manages more than $800 million in client assets and was named to the top 250 wealth management firms in the U.S. by Bloomberg’s Wealth Manager Magazine. Through a series of videos, podcasts and exercises, among other content, users will:
- Understand their money mindset – Whether a spender or saver, users will understand their relationship with and feelings about money that drive financial stress and purchasing behavior.
- Learn to counter the ‘wanting mind’ – Regardless of circumstance, many people falsely align happiness with getting more of what we want, which impacts unhealthy financial behaviors; users will learn to uncover their personal financial values and reduce the power of the wanting mind.
- Navigate around financial icebergs – Everyone has deeply-held beliefs around money that drive their stress and financial decisions. Users will not only uncover them, but receive a customized plan to lessen their impact.
The Financial Wellbeing offering is available immediately to all employers, health plans and wellness providers offering meQuilibrium. More details on the drivers and impact of financial stress and the new Financial Wellbeing solution is available at www.meQuilibrium.com.
meQuilibrium is a digital coaching solution that helps members build resilience, beat stress and adopt healthy behaviors for life. The clinically validated, HIPAA-compliant platform delivers an individualized experience to improve outcomes for employers, health plans, wellness providers, and consumers. meQuilibrium services two key markets: large enterprises, eager to stem the estimated $300 billion they lose each year in employee absenteeism and lost productivity due to stress, and payors and health plans seeking to drive differentiation and innovation in an era of consumer-driven healthcare. To learn more about meQuilibrium, visit www.mequilibrium.com.