red tulips | copyright Jill J. Jensen

 

 

LifeCare

'life event management' services provider

 

As corporations continually seek to maximize their profits and minimize costs to the bottom line, they seem to be at odds with the very real people who work for them. Such is the premise of Zuboff and Maxmin's book The Support Economy. Dealing with the challenges of "work-life balance," the human resources buzz-phrase of the last decade, is exactly what LifeCare intends to do. As an "employee benefits administrator," they partner with businesses and government entities to provide 24/7 on-line and telephone support for the "live events" of those organizations' employees.

What constitutes a "life event?" Maybe it's something as basic as finding a child-care substitute when yours is sick or unavailable. Maybe it's more complex, as in managing both elder care and child care (aging parents, sick kids), while also ensuring that your business travel arrangements run smoothly and get you to your client appointments on time. Now, wouldn't that be slick?!? Under the LifeCare umbrella, it could all be yours — if you're fortunate enough to work for one of its partner companies. Human resource managers can even use the ROI calculator to determine the payback on such an investment.

LifeCare can also help with "daily responsibilities" such as family issues (the child care and elder care noted above, as well as prenatal, adoption, and grandparenting), and health and wellness, including nutrition and fitness options. Financial and legal services include 30-minute consultations with attorneys and financial planners on topics such as credit/debt, insurance, retirement, estate planning, and wills.

LifeCare will even help with "everyday" concerns like automotive repair, home improvement, pets, relocation, and travel. With an online interface customized to your particular company/business, they provide confidential access to all information, as well as nationwide searches, referral to specialists, seminars, online information, and product and service discounts.

Given the perpetual crunch of time and energy, and the mounting psychological division between "work" and "life" so aptly described in The Support Economy, the kind of service offered by LifeCare seems to fit precisely with the demands of the "new society of individuals" and the absence of something that everyone needs but which is no longer an option: a full-time wife.


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