Employees who feel valued in their profession perform better and have a stronger sense of morale and well-being. It’s not rocket science. You would, therefore, think that it would be vital for hospital employees to have a great staff experience. Especially if they are to look after the rest of us effectively.
Yet, the factors that make hospitals unique and fascinating places to work also make it a challenge to sustain staff morale.
Staff in healthcare have to contend with a lot. Making life/death decisions, dealing with demands from physicians/patients/ families are just a couple of the requirements. As such, there are a lot of pressures on healthcare professionals.
These factors, if not dealt with correctly, can be enough to detrimentally affect employee health. It is, therefore, vital that those in leadership roles tend to morale on a daily basis.
But when difficult scenarios are hard to avoid, how do you keep your healthcare staff happy?
Measure Staff Morale- Informal and Formal Hospital Methods
Measuring staff morale can be done in both informal and formal methods. Informal methodology should become part and parcel of the managerial role. This should include strategies such as management by walking around (MBWA). This involves managers talking to their staff throughout the day. To learn what employees are struggling with and what could be put in place to support them.
Perhaps this is an obvious suggestion. But you would be surprised how informal management skills are overlooked during a busy working day. Informal managerial methods allow you to grasp an understanding of the pulse of the organisation. From this you can gain insight into the lives of the people you work with.
Informal methodology, coupled with formal methods such as morale surveys and strategies, can help those in managerial roles. Particularly in deciphering how staff feel about their working environment. Morale surveys should be in-depth. They should produce qualitative as well as quantitative data. This data should be analysed by expert data analysts who can pinpoint areas that need improvement. It is recommended that morale surveys are conducted at least once a year.
Read this article for more in depth methods to boost morale in the workplace.
Remember Confidentiality and Interpretation
Morale surveys and the data collected from them can be inherently insightful. But it is important to keep in mind that dramatisations shouldn’t be made from survey findings. This is where outsourcing data analysis can be particularly useful in providing objective interpretations.
It is easy for those heavily invested in the organisation to be overwhelmed by a set of findings. It is important that you, as a leader, are thoughtful of the issue’s scalability, resources and budgets. You may find that by changing one simple thing, you can actually improve a number of issues. But you need someone who is removed from the situation to spot that.
It is important to remember that the confidentiality of answers should be stressed at every given opportunity. This is to ensure that employees answer questionnaires truthfully. Anonymous is best, and third-party involvement can help keep it confidential.
Take a look at our interview on The Happy App, here, to see how anonymity works best in healthcare improvement.
Predict Hospital Changes in Attitude and Keep Communication Open
In any industry, negative or disruptive events are likely to shift staff morale if not managed efficiently. Changes can often result in fear, as staff worry about how this will impact their work and the security of their role. It is important to keep communication open to reduce any impact from the decisions made by higher management. This should also be the case when evaluators come into the hospital. As this can often be seen as criticisms of the staff’s hard work.
Keep Solutions Simple
Often managers will go into overdrive. They offer initiatives and programs that can actually have the opposite effect of what they intended. This is because they place too much pressure on staff, who are already very busy with their everyday responsibilities. Positive results can often be derived from simple measures. These include helping workplace progression or offering workplace support for those who need it, when they need it.
One of the most recorded complaints amongst healthcare workers is that they are only recognised when they do something wrong. This can be detrimental to the development and well-being of your staff. The power of recognising work well done can work wonders for boosting morale.
At Pansensic, we work with a multitude of healthcare institutions to improve staff morale by identifying issues and their causes. Our qualitative data analysis provides you with powerful insights, that are more granular so that problems can be addressed quickly.
Contact Pansensic, ask for a demo, or just have a chat and see how we can improve the morale in your organisation with our professional data analysis services.