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[Changemakers] How to Support Employees During Menopause

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9 out of 10 people experiencing menopausal symptoms say that it affects their work. But less than 10% will ever seek treatment.

Symptoms like anxiety, poor sleep, joint pain, mood changes, and brain fog can amount to lost productivity and less happiness at work at a time when employers are struggling to retain workers. In fact, 24% of workers experiencing menopause or perimenopause said they left their job due to symptoms, according to Jill Angelo, CEO and founder of Gennev

“It is a retention killer, and oftentimes silent,” Angelo said. 

Angelo left her job at Microsoft to build Gennev out of a need she saw. Perimenopause can last up to 10 years, and typically affects people in their 40s, but many do not know that the variety of symptoms they are experiencing are due to perimenopause. This can lead to misdiagnosis and poor treatment. 

Further, menopause is stigmatized and its symptoms are often viewed as embarrassing.

Gennev works with individuals and employers to provide comprehensive menopause care. This includes ensuring people are educated about menopause; improving the standard of care; ongoing symptom management; and prevention against diseases such as osteoporosis, dementia and diabetes. Gennev operates in 49 states, and offers support via OB/GYNs, health coaches, dietitians and a community. More than 200,000 people have already taken Gennev’s free online menopause assessment

Angelo said most employers do not track the impact of menopause on their employees and their dependents. Many of the employees experiencing menopausal symptoms are senior executive leaders with the most tenure. She pointed to a Yale study that found that menopause costs US employers $28 million annually in lost productivity. 

“You support them with career development—you invest so much in them—why would you not invest in healthcare that makes them the most effective they can be in their jobs?” she said. 

Watch the full recording of our conversation above.