5 Ways Healthcare Organizations Can Improve Employee Engagement
Jun. 01, 2017
How Healthcare Organizations Create Cultures That Drive Employee Engagement
You've heard the phrase "happy wife, happy life." The same can be applied to any employee. It's no surprise that healthcare organizations with high employee satisfaction rates also have high patient satisfaction rates. Joint Commission scores often go hand in hand, and in this case, correlation is at least partly causation.
Workplace Satisfaction Affects Patient Satisfaction
Patient satisfaction is the goal of any healthcare provider, and a key component of patient satisfaction is how staff treats them. When employees are content and workplace satisfaction is high, it manifests itself in high-quality patient care. But it's important to focus on your employees for more reasons than this. Your employees are your "brand ambassadors." They represent your organization in and out of the workplace. In marketing terms, they are walking and talking spokespersons for your brand. It's important to make sure they have good things to say.
How to Get Healthcare Employees Engaged
Here are some ways to make sure your staff feels engaged and appreciated and will help embody and demonstrate the values of your brand.
- Create a Vision: Work with employee representatives to define a desired work culture. Post a one sentence mission statement in staff areas and break rooms. This helps establish a standard for both employees and managers to be mindful of - both sides should be working to achieve this mission.
- Ask and Listen: Engagement improvement starts with surveying employees. Get a feel for where you currently are with an online culture IQ test or create your own survey. Take the feedback seriously. Something you think is minor could be a major point for employees, and a simple fix of a long-term annoyance will go a long way.
- Start a Brand Ambassador Program: If you want to take your survey a step further, consider starting a brand ambassador program. This is an important element of making sure your employees are being heard and equally important when it comes to building your brand.
- Communicate and Recognize: Even more than money, a majority of employees cite appreciation as their biggest motivator. Have an employee recognition board or highlight key players in a community publication. Whatever you do to recognize the good work your employees are doing, be sure to communicate this. Write a letter to the particular employee and make sure the staff is aware (through email or company meeting) of teh employee being celebrated.
- Let Them Help: Those in healthcare are often particularly motivated when it comes to lending a helping hand. Give your employees opportunities to help with fundraising or other organization extracurricular activities. These should never be mandatory, but even so, you will be surprised how many employees step up to help. This is not only good for your causes, but it creates a sense of ownership over the organization that motivates people to help even more.
When employees are engaged, they are more likely to stay and become long-term, devoted healthcare employees. They are more likely to demonstrate higher quality of care. The benefits are numerous, as this study shows. So remember: Employees feeling good about themselves and their jobs is reward enough, but when this translates so clearly to better patient care, these tips aren't just beneficial, they are essential to the health of your whole organization.