At this point, it seems that every day on the calendar is dedicated to something. Some of these are really odd (Feb. 16 – National do a Grouch a Favor Day? Sept. 8 – National Ampersand Day? May 3 – National Lumpy Rug Day?).
There are also some that I can get behind a little more (July 18 – National Ice Cream Day).
But then, there are those designations that, in my mind, really matter. Breast Cancer Awareness Month is one of them.
With all of the focus on COVID, Creating Hybrid Workplaces, The Great Resignation, etc., you wouldn’t think Breast Cancer Awareness Month would stand out. But this year, it hit me like a ton of bricks.
2021 is the third year in a row that has one or more women close to me struggling with Breast Cancer. All have (or had) different variations and treatments – and luckily, all (so far) are surviving. I would be willing to bet that you may also have more than one person in your life that this terrible disease has touched.
I wouldn’t usually think about National Breast Cancer Month as a business topic. However, as organizations, while we may differ on many things, we will likely agree that our most important resource is our people. And when our people are struggling, it affects us all.
Here are a few facts to consider about Breast Cancer:
- Breast cancer is the most common cancer in American women (behind skin cancers)
- There is a 1 in 8 chance that a woman will develop breast cancer in her life
- In 2021, there will be an estimated 281,550 new cases of invasive breast cancer diagnosed in women and 2,650 diagnosed in men
The pandemic has brought the health and safety of our critical team resource to the forefront. As employers and team members, we will, in all likelihood, have this disease touch our organization in some manner.
There are ways that we can help our team to get through this (and some less helpful actions to avoid).
I hope that you let Breast Cancer Awareness Month remind you and your team of the advancement and the work yet to be done around this all too common disease – and how we can support our people should the time come.