The desire for recognition is not a new concept. It is a fundamental human need to feel appreciated for the work that we do. Yet, according to Gallup, 70% of Americans feel unhappy, uninspired and less engaged at work.

There is a direct link between employee satisfaction and patient satisfaction. Clearly, satisfied employees are happier in their workplace, which translates to a more positive patient. Negative employees bring down company morale, which can adversely affect the experience the patient has.

No one wants to be taken care of by an unhappy person. Every employee that has a patient-facing role within the organization strongly influences patient satisfaction. Understanding how employee satisfaction plays an important role in the functionality of the workplace is essential for any business to succeed, especially healthcare organizations.

There are several factors that must be considered when measuring employee satisfaction. Some of these include the overall internal conditions, with which the employee works, the support that the staff receives from the practice, the experience of the employee and the employee retention rate. The leadership team is another consideration as they can have a direct impact on the employee. They can inspire employees or demotivate them.

Here are three ways to improve employee satisfaction today:

  1. Include Employees – When employees have a role in the practices’ decision-making process, they feel they are part of the solution. Employees that feel they have no way to make improvements to their work conditions are more stressed and dissatisfied overall. This then relates to the quality of care that is provided to patients.
  2. Support Employees – It is important that employees feel their management team supports them. This support can come in the form of regular communication with their managers. It can also come by providing employees with the resources needed to provide the best patient care. Chronic stress has a variety of negative side effects. Leadership should support employees by developing a program that cultivates a healthier work/life balance, offers flexibility when possible and encourages living a healthier lifestyle.
  3. Recognize Employees – In order to create a healthier workplace, leaders must recognize employees for their positive efforts. Employees who feel appreciated and recognized for their efforts are more motivated to continue to work hard. One simple way to recognize employees is to encourage employees and management to write notes to recognize employees that are caught doing well. Another time-tested way to recognize employees is through employee of the month and employee of the year awards.

Through better understanding of the unique needs of the employee, medical practices can create a healthier environment for both patients and staff. This translates into growth, which is the primary goal of any business.

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