Cost of healthcare: Top concern for small business CEOs…

…When evaluating candidates for president.

Who will most small business CEOs vote for?

According to a recent Wall Street Journal Vistage Small Business CEO Survey. In the latest poll (released 10-25-12) 797 small business CEOs listed their top concerns:

  1. 62% said the cost of  healthcare
  2. 61% said the economy
  3. 46% said access to capital

For the past five months, there has been a poll of 800 small business CEOs regarding their top concerns affecting their choice of a presidential candidate. The Wall Street Journal article began (See link to article below):

You might think taxes are the biggest issue for small-business voters, with all the sparring between President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney over who should get an extension of the Bush-era tax cuts.

But business owners rank the differences in the candidates’ positions on health care, the economy and access to capital as more important than their positions on taxes, according to a Wall Street Journal/Vistage Small Business CEO survey.

The cost of healthcare is the #1 concern of the small business CEO and for many of the large business CEOs as well.

One CEO of a company that employs 440 full-timers put it this way, “If all of his 440 full-time workers opt to go on his firm’s health plan when the individual mandate takes effect in 2014, he will need to pay $720,000 more a year in insurance premiums. Currently, half his workers don’t participate in the plan.”

The survey did not include large company CEOs which employ over 1,000 people. But I can tell you that the cost of health care is likely one of the top three problems for every single one of them. A decade ago, it was reported that General Motors spends more on health care than they do on steel. I am sure that Ford and Chrysler are in the same sinking boat.

The solution is simple. Teach ALL employees how to take charge of their own health. Then, encourage, incentivize, recognize, and reward everyone in the company—including all the part-timers who may not receive health benefits. And you want to celebrate their successes. A healthy employee is a better employee. You want to help everyone become vibrantly healthy—the effortless weight-loss will be a fringe benefit.

You want to make becoming healthy IMPORTANT in your company. It must become an integral part of the company culture. To be clear, we’re not talking about the standard corporate wellness program that most companies already have. While doing “some” good things, those programs have failed when it comes to curbing the steadily rising cost of healthcare in the workplace.

Taming the health care monster in the workplace—and doing great things for all concerned.

Why have they failed? They are missing a crucial component—the FOOD. Our business leaders are not educating their workforces when it comes to telling them EXACTLY what they must do in order to take charge of their own health. When they do, it is a huge WIN-WIN for all concerned:

  • The employees
  • Their families
  • The customers (lower prices will be possible)
  • The bottom line of the company
  • The shareholders
  • The nation and the world

The Bottom Line. As more and more business owners and CEOs get real SERIOUS about helping all their people become healthy, those CEOs who don’t—will eventually have trouble competing with the ones who do.

Ultimately, this leads to a larger market share for the healthiest companies—and that’s what it’s all about in business! 

(my 630th consecutive daily blog)

Handy 4-piece take-charge-of-your-health kit—from

Want to find out how healthy your family is eating? Take our free 4Leaf Diagnostic Survey. It takes less than five minutes and you can score it yourself. After taking the survey, please give me your feedback as it will be helpful in the development of our future 4Leaf app for smartphones. Send feedback to

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J. Morris Hicks, working daily to promote health, hope and harmony on planet Earth.

For help in your own quest to take charge of your health, you might find some useful information at our 4Leaf page or some great recipes at Lisa’s 4Leaf Kitchen.

Got a question? Let me hear from you at Or give me a call on my cell at 917-399-9700.

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Blogging daily at…from the seaside village of Stonington, Connecticut – Be well and have a great day.

—J. Morris Hicks, board member, T. Colin Campbell Foundation

About J. Morris Hicks

A former strategic management consultant and senior corporate executive with Ralph Lauren in New York, J. Morris Hicks has always focused on the "big picture" when analyzing any issue. In 2002, after becoming curious about our "optimal diet," he began a study of what we eat from a global perspective ---- discovering many startling issues and opportunities along the way. In addition to an MBA and a BS in Industrial Engineering, he holds a certificate in plant-based nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies, where he has also been a member of the board of directors since 2012. Having concluded that our food choices hold the key to the sustainability of our civilization, he has made this his #1 priority---exploring all avenues for influencing humans everywhere to move back to the natural plant-based diet for our species.
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