We are more aware of burnout now. The idea of employee wellness has been written about frequently, particularly during and after COVID. The unprecedented strains on our healthcare professionals have created untenable pressures and stresses on our community facilities at all levels. Employee wellness and happiness aren’t a one-step fix. It’s a process that is complex because of the subtle interplays of the workload, your culture, and the employees themselves. How can community healthcare organizations create a happier workplace? Here are some tips.
Happiness in Your Community Healthcare Facility
Happiness is contagious. You’ll find it affects everything from patient satisfaction to employee retention. But it’s an elusive, moving target that must be approached daily from all sides. Happiness is subjective, too; what makes one medical staffer happy may not be as impactful on another employee. However, there are some assumptions we can make that will help you start with a baseline for creating a better work environment for your teams.
Start with Appreciation
Everyone wants to feel appreciated in their lives and in their work. Community healthcare organizations can create a more positive and satisfying work environment by acting on this general idea. Creating a workplace that is motivating, rewarding, and appreciative of your employees will satisfy something deep inside each person on your team. Create the kind of culture where big and small wins are celebrated and encouraged. Appreciation is more than the paycheck. It is the daily milestones and call-outs that tell your teams, “Thank you for all you do for us and for the communities we serve.”
Provide them with the Right Tools
Broken faxes, computers that crash, frustrating equipment problems. Are you giving your teams the most modern devices that reduce their stresses instead of adding to them? Consider your existing workflows and tools to evaluate whether you are somehow adding to the difficulties inherent in the job. Are you giving employees the right tools to do the job?
Break Up Routines
Healthcare is a varied profession where every patient brings a new challenge. Yet there are still “ho hum” days that can be broken by fun activities you can bring to your team. For example, consider catering lunches or adding a massage therapist for 10-minute neck work to show how much your organization appreciates the staff. These are budget-savvy ways to break up routines and provide stress relievers.
Create Career Roadmaps
Create the kind of environment where employees understand their mission and their goals. This will increase job satisfaction. Teach your team leaders to sit down with new employees at the 90-day mark to create a career roadmap. Do you have a clinical professional just out of residency? Perhaps they would like to become a physician leader and contribute to administrative decisions. Work with them to create that pathway. Perhaps you have a back office worker who wants to gain certification on the clinical side. Help them make that happen. The idea here is that your management team will close gaps between the job itself and the wants, needs, and priorities of your workforce. This will give your team goals, a sense of purpose, and hopefully, keep them happier longer.
UHC Solutions can help improve your workplace happiness by improving your time-to-hire ratios. We place top talent in community healthcare organizations. We can help lighten your administrative load so you can focus on keeping your workforce happy and more productive.