CEOs: Bad Jokes About Good Food
Here’s an excerpt from a post originally published on LinkedIn. This section of the post had to do with how CEOs can support their employees who prefer not to be surrounded with unhealthy food all day everyday.
A leader shows up at an employee celebration and, in his or her opening remarks, breaks the ice with, “Is this cake part of the wellness program? Haha.”
I’ve heard stories from many wellness managers saying that a C-suite leader openly campaigned on behalf of unhealthy food while harping against obesity.
And this will ring familiar to Jane or Joe WellnessManager:
A CEO who says something like, “Uh oh. I’m in trouble because Jane saw me eating a brownie.” Or “We always make sure to have healthy food around when we know Joe is going to be here.”
In doing this, leaders slyly disavow wellness and, what’s worse, mobilize resistance. Really, a CEO who consistently deflects attention to Jane WellnessManager should just send poor Jane packing and spare her and everyone else the awkwardness.
Executives behave this way as a manifestation of their own personal wellness gremlins, or they seek to bond with employees in a manner they unwittingly consider harmless. It’s a side whisper implying, “I know wellness is bullcrap just like you do. But let’s go along with it.”
Active, visible support from CEOs is an essential ingredient for a healthy workforce.