Addiction to alcohol and other drugs costs business in the United States over $100 billion a year. It’s not unusual for a company to lose a million dollars or more every year to addiction related problems. A company the size of General Motors loses close to one billion dollars a year. Industry-wide statistics show profits erode 30 percent in companies where employee alcohol and drug problems are present.
When a high level executive, CEO, CFO, or the president of the company has a chemical dependency problem, it becomes increasingly difficult to address. Their positions protect them from many of the consequences of addiction. Others in the company may be reluctant to discuss the problem. But an impaired executive can have a profoundly negative impact on the company.
Forbes quotes Jeff Jay on addiction in the workplace
A structured intervention is one of the most effective methods for motivating an addicted executive, physician, or attorney to accept treatment. A modified or executive-style intervention is another effective method. An executive-style intervention utilizes the professional interventionist alone or a very small team. This may be crucial when top level executives require the highest degree of confidentiality within the company.
Confidentiality is assured in all interventions, but it is especially important when dealing with impaired healthcare professionals. We have several decades of combined experience in providing intervention services for doctors and other professionals. We are also experienced in working with professional diversion programs when professional licensure is in jeapordy.
Alcohol or drug impaired professionals or behaviorally impaired professionals are usually very intelligent, strong willed, high achievers. But they have developed patterns of living that are not congruent with their profession. Without help, their careers and their families may be in jeapordy.
Attorney Assistance Programs
Structured and executive interventions are also used when approaching impaired attorneys, judges, support staff and law students. These techniques may be combined with a lawyers assistance program.
Intervention preserves the dignity and confidentiality of all involved. An executive interventionist coordinates the many sensitive issues involved in preparing and executing an intervention:
- Builds and trains the intervention team
- Develops a plan for informing key people
- Determines if any external communication is necessary
- Consults on matters of confidentiality
- Chooses an appropriate treatment
- Educates and supports the executive’s family
- Facilitates the intervention
- Coordinates with impaired professional organizations
- Implement 12Care after primary treatment
Read Jeff and Debra Jay’s article in the Michigan Bar Journal “An Avoidable Death” on helping an impaired professional.