Focusing too hard on 401k education can definitely kill your employees’ morale, and make them resent you in a roundabout way. It’s kind of complicated.
Yes, a 401k is a necessary program that all employees seek and most employers offer. It’s a symbol of the employer’s commitment to the employee and his or her long-term financial health. But focusing too much on the 401k—and ignoring other financial wellness programming in the process—can actually undermine any spirit of financial wellness that exists in your workplace.
Take the annual 401k meeting, for example. The next time you run this meeting, look around at the faces of those gathered. Where you might expect to see joy at the prospect of a 1% rise in the company match, instead you see anxious and depressed employees. They are anxious and depressed because the 401k meeting simply reinforces the fact that they have no money to invest in their 401k. And now they are missing out on saving even more money. Double-whammy.
So what’s the solution? If you can’t improve your employees’ financial wellness by offering them the opportunity to save more money, then what can you do?
If your 401k participation rate is poor, don’t keep banging your head against the wall. Help your employees free up money from their budgets by providing them real financial wellness programming. Use a financial wellness consultant to teach them the budgeting skills and minor lifestyle modifications necessary to turn their financial lives around.
Your employees’ new and improved financial well-being will be reflected in their mood, in the work they do, and in the ways in which they interact with one another.
And if all goes according to plan, at next year’s 401k meeting, you will be greeted not with the faces of the anxious and the weary, but with the faces of those eager to seize the opportunity to invest in their long-term financial success.
At Your Money Line, we focus on providing one-on-one financial help through our helpline. Our helpline is staffed by financial experts with decades of experience in the financial industry. They know all the terms and information necessary to help solve even the most complex problems your people face, but even more than that, they are specifically trained in empathy to help meet your employees where they are, encourage them to make the necessary changes, and give them the peace of mind to keep pressing onward.
To learn more about how our Financial Concierge Team can help you, contact us today!