Day in the Life: Tom Noland, Sr. VP of Corporate Communications, Humana Inc.

by Aman Singh Das | October 28, 2011

  • My Vault

 In my role as a senior leader at Humana, I have the privilege of communicating on all of the activities in which the company is engaged; we’re doing so much these days to be excited about. To advance corporate social responsibility (CSR) at Humana, we are engaging stakeholders and companies alike on our efforts and integrating CSR throughout our business.

Our leadership and our associates demonstrate a commitment to our CSR platform--Healthy People, Healthy Planet, Healthy Performance--and I am proud of the progress we’re making . The efforts we’re making now will continue to strengthen that foundation and enhance the positive impact we have on our members and associates, in the communities we serve and on our planet.

But we want you to conclude that for yourself. That’s why, later this year, we will issue our CSR report following the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), the leading CSR reporting framework. This comprehensive commentary tracks our progress in dozens of categories defined by GRI. Personally, I am amazed at the strides we have made in becoming a leader in responsible stewardship, especially on the wellness and environmental fronts.

In September, Humana sponsored Wellness Week activities in New York City–and in our interactive tent, we featured several of our novel Innovation Center programs. A highlight was our Urban Fit Bike prototype that adds a dashboard to bikes for tracking metrics.

The Environmental Protection Agency awarded our Louisville headquarters with an ENERGY STAR® certification. Last Spring, we celebrated the designation with a ceremony attended by Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Kentucky First Lady Beshear. This summer, we partnered with the Environmental Defense Fund’s Climate Corps Program and brought in an EDF Fellow to help us identify energy- and cost-efficient opportunities in our data centers.

We continue to pack our CSR agenda with fresh initiatives.With the following breakdown of a typical day for me here at Humana, I hope you gain a sense of what it’s like to communicate our CSR program and platform. 

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8 a.m.: Arrive in the office and brush up on the news to make sure I’ve captured the pulse of what’s happening around the world. Staying atop the news has always been a priority, so taking that bit of time to get up to speed is critical.

9 a.m.: Participate in a team meeting to consider the marketing and communications events of the week. Here I review the press releases we’ve queued up for the week and make sure they are accurate and timely. I approve messaging for an upcoming media tour. This also is when I troubleshoot with our team members around the country, answering questions and providing feedback on any materials or issues.

10 a.m.: This particular day, I review the draft CSR report – Humana’s first, formal one – with a fine-toothed comb and provide feedback to our greater corporate communications team. This report is a major milestone, and we want to ensure we highlight all of our hard work. Fortunately, great content throughout the report articulates the steady growth and success of our CSR platform.

Noon: Get a recap from the team on Wellness Week in New York City. We discuss the outcomes and feedback of the week. I learned that the event reached nearly 6,000 direct participants, generated 120,000 walk-by impressions and drew 1,100 on-site bike riders who burned 245,000 calories, generating the equivalent of 27,500 watts-hours of power.

1 p.m.: Grab lunch on the go and attend a meeting with the corporation communications team. We discuss the design concepts and layout of our CSR report to ensure they align with Humana’s new branding and represent our company’s focus on health and well-being.

2 p.m.: I like to check our internal communications site, Humana Today, as often as I can to make sure I have a handle on all the latest enterprise-wide happenings. This is a time to catch up on news and take a look at what our associates are involved in.

2:30 p.m.: I participate in a scheduled meeting to brief Humana’s CEO and chief marketing and innovation officer on upcoming events, media tours, messaging and the latest media coverage. This is a time to get feedback on media received and strategies moving forward.

3 p.m.: At this point of the day, I usually am in back-to-back meeting on a host of items, which could cover a recently released press release, deal with fielding calls from reporters and producers on a story on which they’re working and preparing for an upcoming quarterly earnings report.

4 p.m.: A meeting with senior leadership involves our plan of action around how best to illuminate to our internal and external audience the hard and important work we’re doing at Humana on CSR. In addition, we are scheduling the CSR Stewards meeting that focuses on 2012 planning and future energy, water and waste reduction targets.

5 p.m.: Meet with one of Humana’s NGO partners to discuss the strategy and rollout of pilot program we’re working on in Eastern Kentucky that addresses how best to combat preventable diseases.

5:30 p.m.: Get on a call with the Clinton Foundation to get a status update and rundown on the Humana Challenge PGA Tour and the annual symposium. This is the first year of Humana’s eight-year sponsorship of the event.

6:00 p.m.: I check tomorrow’s calendar and create a to-do list. I e-mail myself any articles of note to read at home on issues surrounding the CSR landscape, healthcare, our industry, and Capitol Hill.

6:30 p.m.: I head home to spend time with my family. 

 

Tom Noland, Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications, Humana Inc.

Filed Under: CSR

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