RSSAll Entries in the "Staff motivation" Category

Recognize fatigue at your facility

The difficult economy has added stress and anxiety to the workplace. Longer hours, smaller staffs, and a “do more with less” attitude create feelings of fatigue and sluggishness that can be crippling to patient care. It’s important to recognize the signs of fatigue so that you can provide help to staff members that may need it.

A flip through the pages of Fight Fatigue: A Nurse Manager’s Guide to Reduce Risk and Revitalize Staff reveals a fatigue checklist that can help you collect data on your staff. Answer “yes” or “no” to the following questions: [more]

Use surveys to motivate your staff

Motivating staff is not a once-a-month or quarterly item on a manager’s to-do list. It is a process that requires constant grooming on your part. Understanding that what motivates one person does not necessarily motivate another is a fundamental aspect of your efforts. Setting realistic goals for your motivation efforts keeps the manager from making assumptions about what does and does not work Variety is the key to success and your willingness to incorporate a buffet of motivational strategies will result in positive behaviors.

So, how does a manager know what to put on this buffet table of prompters? Ask your staff!

You can do this through a brief email or survey. Consider these questions for your survey:

  • What motivator was used at a previous job that would encourage you to become more actively involved in change at this job?
  • Which of the following would you include in your top three motivators?
    • Understanding not just what is being asked of me, but why it is important enough for me to care
    • Points toward a higher level as a staff nurse which would result in an increase in pay
    • Knowing my involvement improves patient care
    • Knowing my involvement improves our working conditions
    • Certificates to use as money in the gift shop or cafeteria
    • Knowing my manager is holding my co-workers accountable when necessary

What questions would you add to this list? Have you done a similar survey in the past and, if so, how did the results help you as a manager?

Engaging the unengageable

by Deanna Miller, RN, MSN/Ed, HCE

As managers we often hear the terms “engagement” and “employee satisfaction” interchangeably. Even though you are a great manager and truly care about your staff it is often difficult to get them motivated and engaged in what they are doing. I was off on leave for about a month and during that time period I continuously brainstormed to come up with interventions to “get them engaged.”

Here are my secrets to successful engagement….please share yours.

1. Eat lunch with your staff with an “anything goes conversation.” (They love seeing that even the manager is human…it has proved to be a blast)

2. Plan an outing away from the facility. (I have planned an early dinner at a nearby lodge on two consecutive Fridays so that everyone can come regardless of scheduling. Budget for special events)

3. When they bring concerns, work related or personal, listen to them and make great eye contact. Always keep those personal conversations confidential.

Energize and motivate staff to conduct research

A motivated nursing staff is key to achieving outcomes of excellence. All facilities require motivation from nurses to increase productivity and service in a creative, efficient manner. However, this isn’t always an easy task, especially when you are trying to motivate your nurses to get involved in research.

Some organizations may tie research into professional development expectations, such as in a clinical ladder or other career advancement program. Others may reward and celebrate nurses who engage in research, such as recognizing them as “change champions” and allowing them time off from the unit to participate in committees or team-building projects. Consider doing the following to get your staff excited about conducting research:

  • Send thank-you cards and e-mails
  • Present employees with certificates to hang on the wall (you can make professional-looking certificates with any desktop word processing software)
  • Provide team/ peer recognition (e.g., in a hospital newsletter)
  • Encourage team members to aim for advancement
  • Provide designated parking spots for employees who have excelled
  • Present new challenges to team members (do not let them “coast” once a project has been completed)

How do you boost staff motivation at your facility?