When people read online about a talent shortage, the stories generally focus on the tech sector. However, the healthcare field needs to retain its best employees, too. Consider:
- Healthcare added 422,000 jobs in 2016 due to increased demand
- The unemployment rate for healthcare workers is 3.2%
- Many physicians and nurses are approaching retirement age
- A new employee needs time to get acclimated to a job
- Turnover carries high costs
Bad Management Causes Good People to Go
It is as important as ever for hospitals and clinics to keep top-performing employees. Many organizations, unfortunately, fail to retain the best people. Often it comes down to mistakes in management. Below are some 5 things that drive employees crazy and how you can prevent good people from walking out your door.
- Micromanagement- Do you find yourself looking over the shoulder of even the best employee? Imagine how a well-educated, responsible adult reacts to being treated like a child. Stop doing that immediately. You need to let good employees do their jobs.
- Unclear Communication- Managers must clearly and succinctly convey expectations. Make sure people know, even before they join your organization, how you define a successful employee. Always give clear directions to avoid frustration.
- No Recognition- When a physician or nurse delivers consistent, high quality patient care, that person deserves recognition. The same principle applies to a team that works well together. Pizza parties, gift cards, and even simple thank you notes recognize contributions without spending a lot of money (See ‘5 Great Ways to Reward Your Employees’ for more ideas).
- Picking Up Others’ Slack- Dealing with people who have health problems is physically and emotionally consuming. Good management means making sure people have appropriate workloads. Make sure your best employees are not picking up the slack for your worst employees. Resentment is inevitable if your best employee is doing others’ work in addition to his or her own job.
- Lack of Training and Professional Development- Good employees want to grow professionally. As a manager, make sure you offer realistic training. Survey your employees, both clinical and non-clinical, to find out what seminars they view as beneficial. When you budget for additional professional development opportunities, you let your employees know you value their growth.
Good Management Retains the Best Employees
Even the best jobs have duties that are not particularly fun. For instance, dealing with the paperwork associated with insurance and government programs always annoys doctors and nurses. An excellent manager, however, makes sure that communication is clear, supervision is not overbearing, workloads are appropriate, and hard work is recognized.
It is not enough for people to like their job duties. The best people in healthcare, like the top people in the corporate world, want to know that their employer appreciates their contributions. Good management ensures that people with the best skills and work ethic stay.