Managing and Motivating without Money in Healthcare and beyond
Across the board, we’re feeling it. I’m sure the pressure I experience as a manager at a healthcare IT/intranet company is nothing comparing to the pressures the leadership and staff deals with on a daily basis in hospital environments.
We’re feeling the squeeze, the heat, the pressure to pinch every penny. Save here, cut there…make do with what/who you have. Not to mention, we’re getting more work thrown at us than ever before. Yes, I’ve been there and I’ve felt that pressure - it can be quite overwhelming. I have to be careful to stay on topic here because the list of management pressures can get quite long. Here, I’d to focus on employee motivation with limited resources.
Happy hospital staff -> happy hospital patients!
The easiest way to find out the right buttons to push is to truly understand things from the employees standpoint is to remember what it’s like to be in their shoes. Whether you’re new to your management role or have been established in your position for a while, this can be a difficult thing to do. If you’re new, you no doubt have lots of fun and exciting (and sometimes stressful) duties to learn and perform. As the new Manager of Client Services here at HospitalPortal.net, I’m experience this right now! If you’re more seasoned, the time since your last subordinate position may cause you to be a little disconnected. Motivation starts with trust. If your employees trust that you are leading them in the right direction, they will follow. To build that trust, it’s crucial that recognize, sympathize, and if possible, empathize with the struggles they face day-to-day. That’s the first half. The second half is to convey that understanding back to the employees. The second half is just as important as the first in employee satisfaction.
Being a part of a team
There are many jobs and careers where people are able to work within themselves; a one-man band. However, to the most of this audience, your staff chose their particular field because they work well with others and work well in a team environment (assuming the right people are in place). Part of the reason they chose the career they did is because the want to be part of a team. People like this feed off of working through problems together and celebrating success together. They have a desire to help others, and knowing that they’re helping someone else will motivate them to continue to do so. To get your employees to start (hopefully to continue) doing this, it’s imperative they know you will support them as their team leader.
Building trust and showing appreciation
To start building this trust and buy-in amongst your staff it is important to show appreciation. It’s amazing the effect that a simple, personal “thank you” can have on employee morale. It must be genuine. To take it one step further, conveying exactly what you’re appreciative for and why you appreciate it can work miracles! This shows your staff what kind of direct, positive, impact they have on hospital/facility/company.
As a manager, your time is stretched thin. It’s completely understandable that reaching out to each employee, one by one, to motivate them through personalized gratitude may not be feasible right away. This will happen over time. However, to get the ball rolling, you need to find a way to communicate with everyone while also making the most efficient use of your time. There are tools you can utilize to accomplish this. For example, utilizing an intuitive, central communication hub, such as a Hospital Intranet, is a perfect tool for this job. Many Intranet solutions have the ability to publish “Employee of the Month” notifications. Other ideas could include:
- “Employee highlight” for when one staff member or manager wants to recognize another for going above and beyond
- Contest announcements
- Employee Surveys / requesting employee feedback
- Any many others
Contrary to popular belief, money isn’t the only thing that drives people. In the right healthcare environment, people drive people. Buy into this philosophy and you shouldn’t have to buy your hospital’s employee satisfaction!
A case study about a HospitalPortal.net hospital client that during a period of rapid expansion, needed an intranet solution that could keep up with organizational changes. This case study tells the story of how an Intranet helped them improve communication and engagement throughout the expansion period.