GREATER OMAHA WORKLAB (GrOW)

We help your employees address personal
challenges, so they can be successful at work.

A Supportive Workplace is Good for Business.

Your employees are the lifeblood of your business. And, GrOW is a unique employee benefit that embeds a Navigator at your site to support employees. A Navigator can help them cope with the daily disruptions of life outside of work, so they can be present and focused at work.

Navigators become a familiar face your employees come to trust. We maintain confidentiality and use our knowledge of community resources (and your employee benefits package) to empower your employees to make decisions that are right for them.

We support your employees in life so they can meet their potential at work.
Bottom line—better for everyone.

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These Companies Help Their Employees Bring Their Whole Selves to Work.

An Employee Benefit with Concrete Business Outcomes.

Increase Employee Success

By working with a GROW Navigator, your employees can handle situations that might have caused performance and attendance challenges.

 

More Inclusive Workplace

When everyone can succeed, your workplace becomes more inclusive, more equitable and more welcoming.

Increase Retention

Personal and professional challenges can keep employees from being fully present at work. By working with a GrOW Navigator, employees create a plan that keeps them on the job.

Put the Whole Person First

According to Gartner, supportive employers see a 20% increase in the number of high performers. Prioritize people and productivity follows.

The GrOW program has added an entirely new dimension of service and support for Oxbow employees. Our Navigator is accessible, resourceful and creative, helping employees manage difficult life challenges in ways our HR team and managers cannot. GrOW is a trusted partner and a sound investment.

How We Help.

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On-Site + One-on-One Support

On site and on demand, GrOW Navigators become a familiar face in your workplace. No number to call. No appointment needed. Unlimited support.

Fill in Where Employers Can’t

Navigators deal with the “tough stuff” that employees are not likely to share with their employer. Employees can discuss personal and work issues — confidentially and without judgement.

Maximize Internal and External Resources

GrOW Navigators build a stronger connection between your employees, the resources of the community, and your employee benefits.

What Can Navigators Support Employees With?

GrOW Navigators bring a flexible toolkit to support employees with anything that might keep them from being physically or mentally present at work. Some (but nowhere near all) of those are:

  • Rental assistance and utility subsidies
  • Stress and mental health
  • Relationships and family responsibilities
  • Budgeting and household expenses
  • Reliable transportation
  • Affordable childcare
  • Understanding and using employee benefits
  • Goal setting and building healthy habits
  • Education and career advancement
  • Building emergency savings
  • Retirement planning
  • Buying a home or car

What Our Support Means to Your Employees.

A Safe Home for Her and Her Children.

“Cammy” desperately needed help with a custody issue, and she needed help fast. If she didn’t find legal representation by the end of the week, the father of her children planned to take their children and relocate to Texas. Because she had lost custody and only had visitation rights, Cammy knew she was in for a fight. The most affordable lawyer she found asked for $2,500 up front before they would even look at her case.

Feeling defeated, Cammy decided to meet with the on-site Navigator. In one meeting, the Navigator was able to contact a Navigator-preferred attorney, explain the urgency of the situation, set up an arrangement for Cammy to pay only a $200 retainer. Then, the attorney made a payment arrangement with Cammy that fit her budget. With the help of the Navigator and the attorney, Cammy was not only able to stop the relocation, but she now has full custody of her children.

woman walking hand-in-hand with four young children
two women having a conversation

Relief for an Employee and Concerned Managers.

Two managers were concerned about an employee who was in a dangerous situation. They approached the Navigator because the problem was outside of their scope. The employee was hesitant to meet with the Navigator due to fear of judgment or making matters worse. However, once the employee sat down with the Navigator, they immediately knew it was a safe, confidential space to discuss their problem openly. Together, the employee and the Navigator discussed the violence occurring in her home and identified individuals whom she could reach out to as a support system.

The Navigator called the Women’s Center for Advancement (WCA) and connected her to a support group and legal assistance when the client was ready. The client left with hope and a plan to create a safer environment at home. She told the Navigator, “I didn’t think this would work, but I feel so much better. This helped so much because you understand I’m not a victim, and you didn’t treat me like one.”

A Move from Uncertain Renter to Confident Homeowner.

“Steve” was approaching the end of his lease and was unsure if he wanted to renew. He wanted a better home and neighborhood in which to raise his children. He asked the Navigator for help finding another place to rent, but after reviewing his credit and income, the Navigator asked if he had ever considered owning a home. Steve always thought homeownership was not possible for him due to his criminal record and lack of knowledge of the process.

The Navigator was able to educate Steve on the qualifications and responsibilities of homeownership and give him the good news that he was qualified. Then, the Navigator set him up with a mortgage loan officer and a real estate agent. He contacted them the same day. Within a month, Steve closed on his first home, officially making him the first person in his family to own their home. Overwhelmed with joy, Steve moved his family into their new home and even joined the neighborhood watch association to ensure this neighborhood would remain safe for years to come.

close up of a man's hand holding house keys

We want to support employees to be the best version of themselves. So many employees have distractions and crises outside of work that make it difficult for them to be focused and present at work, yet they have little to no support system. GrOW allows employees to get support one-on-one in a safe, confidential space by providing guidance, helping them find resources, and providing that support system through life’s challenges as many times as they need. It’s an opportunity for us to help support the whole employee.   

Meet Our Team.

GrOW Navigators help your employees build the skill set they need to tackle future challenges and make progress toward their long-term goals. Along the way, they know they can always come to us whenever they need assistance.

Chad Mares

Allean Ward-Thompson

Olajide Cooper

Leressa Joiner

Alexis Kimmi

LaToya Oliver

Breina Romero

Ana Torres Rodriguez

Frequently Asked Questions

What does Greater Omaha Worklab (GrOW) do?

We help employees stay and thrive in the workplace through on-site personal coaching and resource navigation. GrOW provides one-on-one support services to employees of member companies with the goal of ensuring that employees have what they need to come to work and to focus on being successful in the workplace and their personal lives.

What value does GrOW provide?

Our employer partners receive value by having a trusted resource working directly with their employees. GrOW Navigators are impartial and completely confidential and help eliminate obstacles that can keep employees from being fully mentally or physically present at work.

Employees receive value by having access to a professional who knows what resources are available locally and can quickly align those resources to help employees find solutions to life’s challenges.

Local non-profits, government agencies and private businesses receive value because GrOW Navigators guide employees to appropriate services.

What types of organizations can use a GrOW Navigator?

Any. If you value your employees and care about their long-term success inside and outside of the workplace, then adding a Navigator to your suite of workplace benefits is for you.

My company has an EAP program. What is the difference?

Our services complement EAP programs, which typically focus on counseling services to address mental and emotional issues. EAP benefits are generally short-term in nature, held remotely and limit the number of sessions.

By contrast, GrOW Navigators are on-site and available for as long as an employee needs or desires assistance. Thus, GrOW Navigators are helping resolve immediate needs and working with employees on longer-term stability and growth objectives. In addition, our GrOW Navigators recognize situations where an EAP benefit is appropriate and facilitate the connection. 

What background do GrOW Navigators have?

Relationships and trust guide a successful GrOW Navigator. Navigators have experience and receive additional training in motivational interviewing, mental health first aid and are trauma-informed.

Navigators have a working knowledge of human resources and employment practices. In addition, our Navigators know and receive additional training in financial coaching. Lastly, Navigators have familiarity with community resources and the ability to coordinate services for our clients.

Is the Navigator a counselor or licensed therapist?

Navigators are trained to help employees but are not counselors or licensed therapists.

How can we promote these services to our employees?

GrOW Navigator services are an investment you are making to develop your employees. A Navigator’s mission is to guide people toward solutions to challenges and empower rather than “fix” people. Therefore, it should not be positioned or viewed as a service that employees utilize only in emergencies. Because GrOW Navigators are a third party, and because of the confidentiality commitment, employees are less likely to feel that their professional reputation is at risk due to personal challenges.

How is trust handled between GrOW Navigators and management or HR?

We view management and HR as partners in supporting the employees, understanding that employee confidentiality must be maintained. Our Program Director manages the overall employer relationships and checks in with HR and management via regular meetings.

How do employees gain total confidence about confidentiality?

GrOW Navigators explain to the employee that their conversations are held in confidence unless the person permits us to share information – the only exception being if there is a concern that the person will harm themselves or others. No specifics are shared with the employer.

How long will an employee be served?

There is no limit to the number of sessions an employee can have with a Navigator. In addition, the employee can continue to work with their Navigator as long as they remain at one of our partner companies.

Should everyone go through the program?

Navigator sessions are open to all employees. We work with the employer to promote the program through various channels visible to employees at all levels: new hire orientation, emails, website, bulletin boards, etc. We also encourage employers to refer employees to the Navigator directly. However, the employee is ultimately the decision-maker as to whether they use the services offered. In addition to assisting employees, our Navigators are available to their family members, one generation up, down and across. 

How can a supervisor work with a GrOW Navigator?

Managers and supervisors play an essential role in the success of their employees and the integration of the GrOW program into the workplace culture. The supervisor-employee relationship is a critical referral point for employees to a Navigator. Supervisors are often made aware of potential barriers by their employees first. By referring the employee to their Navigator for assistance, they can often get their employees the help they need before it affects their performance at work. 

We’re a Regional Service Provider with Worklife Partnership of Denver, CO.

Worklife Partnership is a national nonprofit network that brings together businesses and community resources to enact new ideas and spread solutions. Across the country, more than 125,000+ employees have access to a Navigator across 29 states. Together, we share a common goal to help people solve real problems through supportive relationships.

For More Information

Contact Chad Mares, Senior Director, Workforce Services/GrOW
pznerf@bznunpunzore.bet | (402) 676–0815