5 Employee Appreciation Solutions for Your Healthcare Organization
Healthcare is a tough industry considering how inherently stressful it is. Factors such as high demands for line staff and managers, the stress of caring for the elderly population, regulatory boards to abide by and the advertised litigation combated daily all contribute to high turnover in healthcare, all mostly uncontrollable.
Despite those downfalls, there are other controllable issues impacting employee turnover including overworked and underappreciated employees. Employees are customers too! Happy employees lead to happy residents and family members. When you want to focus on improving our customer service, start with employee satisfaction.
Engaged and happy employees will provide a wonderful customer experience for residents, family members
Here are 5 tips to improve employee happiness and appreciation:
1. Develop standards of behavior for staff.
By developing and communicating clear expectations regarding customer service, employees understand their roles and responsibilities. Hold them accountable. Remember, there’s no such thing as too much communication when it comes to expectations and achieving goals. Employees, just like most customers, want communication including being listened to. Meet with employees, ask questions and then LISTEN to the answers!
2. Recognize a job well done.
This should be the easy part of communication since everyone likes hearing good news! Think about the moments you were recognized by a supervisor. Recognition should be timely, often and specific.
For example, saying “Good job team for all your hard work,” is better than not saying anything at all, but saying, “Thank you, Toni, for all of your help over the past few weeks developing our new employee orientation. It will really help the onboarding process and set us above our competitors,” is way more impactful and will resonate with the employee.
Also, recognize employees publicly and privately. This encourages others to strive for the same recognition. People need more than symbols of their achievements, they need the human touch to make the experience full circle. Remember, one size doesn’t fit all. Write thank you notes, use an employee of the month program, utilize employee culture committees, retention committees made up of line staff for ideas, or develop award programs to personalize the experience.
3. Create a strong sense of teamwork and support.
This type of environment helps boost employee morale and engagement. Make sure they know they’re not alone in this stressful yet crucially important line of work. Support line staff by pitching in. By helping in tough situations, you’re showing that you recognize the challenges and at the same time modeling the behavior you want to see in staff. This becomes a reciprocal action. If you help someone, they’re more likely to help you or their colleague when they’re in a tough situation. Be the manager you would want to follow.
4. Give line staff some autonomy.
Don’t micromanage frontline staff. Try not to second-guess their decisions. By giving them some autonomy, they will feel respected and empowered, which in turn, leads to job satisfaction.
5. Track your efforts.
Be sure to track your efforts to see what’s working and what’s not. Using data to back up your processes can be used for quality assurance and performance improvement efforts. Use employee satisfaction surveys or focus groups to track the level of employee satisfaction when rolling out new programs geared toward improving employee culture. You can also track resident and family satisfaction throughout the process, which will have an impact as well.
Remember that all customers want to be heard, so when you ask questions, simply listen to the answers and turn the knowledge into positive actions toward a culture change. Engaged employees will want to provide quality care for other customers, which will decrease employee turnover, improve resident customer satisfaction since they’re receiving great care, leading to fewer complaints and litigation, and overall can decrease your financial strain and budgetary issues. Again, happy employees lead to happy residents and family members. Everyone wins!
For more information on creating employee appreciation and satisfaction programs, contact a member of the ‘A’ Team!
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