The Health Care Industry is a natural bed of stress and low employee morale. This low morale has a huge effect on productivity and profitability and; patient safety can also be compromised by poor employee morale in some sectors of the health care industry.
Think about the environment that most workers deal with daily. Employees are dealing with:
1. Sick people or the families of sick people
2. Ever tightening business budgets
3. Being asked by management to do more work at the same or less level of income
4. Frustrated management who are also trying to do more with less
5. Frustrated consumers of service who are paying “too much” for health care insurance
6. The stresses of job security
These and other management behaviors are all tied to morale and employee’s desire to come to work and perform at their highest levels.
So, what can management do to help alleviate the burdens that contribute to all this stress and low morale?
Here are a few thoughts:
1. Managers can learn coaching techniques that will let employees know that they are genuinely interested in the employee and what they have to say. Learning and applying good listening skills can and will turn employees around.
2. Learn to co create with employees – instead of always managing from the top down, managers can through a coaching model learn to share visions with employees and ask for suggestions. No one knows a job better than the person actually does it. When managers ask for suggestions they will be amazed at what could come through the responses. And, the most incredible by product of this process can be the lift the employee gets through being asked for their opinion.
3. Show appreciation that employees are real people with real lives. Understand that at times the “personal’ issues that an employee is living may come through at work. Be understanding and recognize that sometimes they can’t leave it all at the door. Show understanding and compassion for the infrequent occasion when necessary.
It is human nature to want to be happy. When we make a conscious effort to make the work place a safe and happy place to be, the results with regard to productivity, safety and profitability will astonish you. Value your assets (your employees) and protect your bottom line.