Alticor Fatten Wallets By Slimming

    ADA — Alticor Inc. just introduced a new employee wellness program designed to promote healthy lifestyles, reduce disability and sick time expenses, and give employees a cost break on their health plan premiums.

    Alticor unveiled its “Optimal You” incentive program in a series of employee presentations last week that included encouraging words from Amway co-founder Rich DeVos and a demonstration by Alticor President Doug DeVos on the steps involved in a fitness evaluation.

    Insisting that it’s “not going to wait any longer for the problem of rising health-care costs to be fixed,” the company maintained that the more employees that strive for optimal heath, the less reliance they’ll have on a health care system that grows increasingly costly by the day.

    “As a health company, I really think we should be doing more of this,” Doug DeVos said.

    Rich DeVos described Alticor as a company that’s about helping people live better lives.

    “Our products and our business make a difference in the health, wellness and personal fulfillment of people around the world,” he said in a pre-taped interview. “It shouldn’t be any different for our employees. Healthy employees are happier employees at work and at home. We want to provide you with the resources to enhance your heart, mind and body.”

    Heart, mind and body are the soul of the new wellness program, and participating employees are encouraged to set at least one personal goal in each category:

    • Heart goals focus on serving others and caring for the environment through community volunteer activities.
    • Mind goals focus on personal development and intellectual growth through educational classes and seminars, mind challenging activities and increased reading.
    • Body goals focus on achieving optimal health through such means as physical activity, weight reduction, smoking cessation and improved dietary habits.

    Alticor’s affiliations with local nonprofits provide employees with a lot of volunteer options in the “heart” category, and in the “mind” category the company offers educational classes on site on such topics as international business, management and conflict resolution, said Matt Geik, wellness program manager. Outside educational and recreational pursuits are equally encouraged under the program.

    Employees opting to participate have to complete an online health and lifestyle questionnaire, set personal goals for 2005 based on results of the health assessment, and complete preventive screenings geared for their age and gender. Geik said all personal information is gathered by an outside firm and remains private.

    Participants in the program this year will see the employee-paid portion of their health plan premiums reduced up to $283 for 2006.

    Alticor just completed expansion of its in-house fitness center two weeks ago, expanding the center from its original 9,202 square feet of space to 15,292 square feet. The expansion included a new gym floor, improved ventilation and air conditioning, the addition of 32 different pieces of cardio equipment with personal TV screens and 22 pieces of new weight room equipment. There also are bikes for spinning classes, Pilates mats and exercise balls, among other equipment.

    “If we don’t have something you need, we’ll help you find it,” Geik said. “We have the resources.”    

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