Can a Flu Shot demonstrate Authenticity?

by cv harquail on October 15, 2009

Has your organization made it easy for you to get a flu vaccine?

If your organization really wanted to be authentic, maybe it would offer everyone flu shots.

  • At a private pre-school near me, they had a pediatrician offer a “flu shot clinic” for children, teachers, parents and caregivers– doing their best to get flu protection for everyone in the children’s community.
  • At Multi-Media company in NYC, they offered flu vaccines to every employee through a clinic in a conference room. After your shot, you could take an apple or two from a pile brought in by the COO from her own apple orchard.
  • My landscape designer neighbor took her crew in their truck to the nearby MediCenter and paid for all 4 guys to get a flu shot, even though they only work for her part-time on a project by project basis.

flu shot sign.jpg

All three organizations were being authentic, because in each case, protecting members from the flu is a way to put the organization’s values into practice.

Authentic Business Values

All three of these organizations have “business reasons” for offering the flu vaccine to their workers. If the workers got sick, these organizations would need to find substitute workers and pay extra for substitute workers. Or, they would have to cope with finding other ways to get work done, or just not get it done. So, for these organizations, making it easy for employees to get flu vaccines meant that the organization was protecting its core business.

Authentic Collective Values

At the same time, though, each of these organizations demonstrated a commitment to its employees (and, indirectly, to their employees’ families too). The organizations each made it easy for members who wanted flu shots to get flu shots. The organizations made it easy for members to protect themselves, each other, and each other’s families.

mickipedia flu shot.jpgIn organizations that are only for-profit, offering flu shot clinics is an easy way to be authentic in protecting the bottom line. For organizations that have as part of their identity a commitment to their members’ health and welfare, to “work family fit”, or to a family-like corporate culture, offering flu shot clinics is a way to be authentic in protecting their collective values.

Has your organization made it easy for you to get a flu vaccine?
What do you think that says about “who” your organization is?

{ 1 comment }

Mama Bee October 15, 2009 at 4:59 pm

Great post — flu shots are a very concrete way that an employer can show serious commitment to the health of its employees. At my non-profit, family-oriented company, they are offering H1N1 flu shots in a conference room. However, they have only been able to secure 50 doses of the shot — not enough for all 250 employees. They have handled the dilemma by providing a sign-up sheet and offering the shots first come, first serve. I wonder if there would have been a more authentic way of handling the inherent inequity of making the shot available to a small number of employees and not most others. (I’m not sure there is; just posing the question.)

Best, TMB
.-= Mama Bee´s last blog ..Solutions for All Working Parents =-.

Comments on this entry are closed.