Defined as employees who are “involved in, enthusiastic about and committed to their work and workplace,” employee engagement is an integral part of everything that happens in and around a healthcare facility. If that description doesn’t sound like the employees in your facility, you might have some employees who are disengaged.
The impact disengaged employees can have on your healthcare facility and its patients is greater than you think. Here are ways to measure, and improve, employee engagement in your facility.
There are three types of employees you will find in your facility:
- Engaged: Employees who work with passion and feel a profound connection to their company. They drive innovation and move the organization forward. These are your high-performers.
- Not-Engaged: Employees who are essentially “checked out.” They’re sleepwalking through their workday, putting time – but not energy or passion – into their work.
- Actively Disengaged: Employees who aren’t just unhappy at work; they’re busy acting out their unhappiness. Every day these workers undermine what their engaged coworkers accomplish.
It’s important to understand how engaged your employees are by hearing from them directly. You might not be able to simply observe and see which employees are engaged, not-engaged, or actively disengaged, but by hearing from them directly, you can get a better sense of how engaged your employees are. One way to do this is to implement focus groups or distribute surveys around your facility to gather direct data directly.
Address Issues with Action Plans
After collecting and analyzing your employees' data, it's time to create and implement an action plan. Part to-do list and part strategy, the action plan should aim to impact your company culture for positive change.
The action plan must be communicated with the employees as they are implemented. Keeping your employees updated and aware that their voices are being heard improves the engagement process so they understand how the organization is addressing their concerns. There are multiple ways to keep employees updated on progress, including email and/or online dashboards, verbally sharing updates in company meetings, one-on-one meetings with employees individually, and more.
Keep It Going
You’ve created a survey, focus group, or another way to gather data for employee engagement. You’ve created an action plan to address issues and communication updates to your employees. Your work is done, right? Wrong: Action plans for employee engagement are not a one-and-done accomplishment. A long-term strategy must be in place to measure actions as they are completed and as your facility’s goals continue to evolve. In turn, it is crucial to maintain buy-in from departments that consistently encourage feedback, as it will help influence other departments and employees to continue to participate.
Your employees have the potential to make some of the biggest impacts on your healthcare facilities, no matter their role. When they are disgruntled and disengaged, the repercussions could ripple far beyond your facility’s walls. Take the time to truly understand how your employees feel and examine how that impacts the patient experience. Listening to your employees and making them feel more engaged is important alone, but the benefits will far outweigh the time, cost and growing pains to have a fully engaged staff that know they make a difference every single day.
Download our whitepaper on employee engagement for more information.