Does your company's EAP compare to your Plan Your Story program?

When speaking to HR managers or company leadership, some version of this question almost always pops up. It makes sense. When your organization spends time and energy on an employee well-being solution like an EAP (Employee Assistance Program), it makes sense to question how yet another benefit could improve overall workforce performance.

I think there are two ways to look at this question. First, let's look at what an EAP is. By definition, your EAP is a voluntary, work-based program that offers free and confidential assessments, short-term counseling, referrals, and follow-up services to employees who have personal and/or work-related problems. They're almost always free to the employee, family members can use the information, and the service is confidential. This is all great news to the employees.

"By definition, your EAP is reactionary."

When you compare the most common services utilized from an EAP with Plan Your Story, we see one striking difference: Your Story is a program for preparing your family for aging challenges ahead. EAP services are delivered when the employee has already experienced a crisis or is expecting to. By definition, your EAP is reactionary. You're looking for help to solve a problem that has already occured. And used properly, it can be a confidential shoulder to lean on, or a resource library for unanswered questions.

Plan Your Story prepares you and your family for the road ahead. It's a tool that ensures your family is ready for an aging crisis so you can get on with your life - when life gets tough.

Here's the good part. Your Plan Your Story program is the perfect compliment to any existing EAP program. When a family crisis hits, sometimes the help of an anonymous counseling session is the right medicine as you and your family work through your workbook, answering questions about mom or dad's health. They work together and are found to offer greater assistance than if the crisis was dealt with separately.

With that said, we frequently hear HR teams say "We have a wildly popular EAP, we'll let our employees use this service instead of your Plan Your Story". Well, simply put, there is not one EAP on the market today that successfully answers the preparation question. They just don't. And that's ok!

Launching a Plan Your Story program will prepare your workforce for the rigors of family crisis well ahead of the life-changing event. And... when this event(s) fires off, you'll not only have your Plan Your Story in your back pocket, you'll have the support of an EAP provider at your reach as well.


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