Second in a series of blog posts examining challenges facing health care administration.
Beyond the financial effects discussed in Part 1, losing and re-hiring hospital personnel also affects the experience of patients. Committed, engaged and satisfied employees means better patient care.
Research has shown that the quality of relationships within immediate professional workgroups – and the degree to which employees are committed to the organization and their immediate workgroups – are key factors in reducing turnover.
Within immediate workgroups, two relationship types have been studied in particular: relationships between physicians and nurses and relationships between nurses and the nurse supervisor. Relationships between nurses and physicians and nurses and their supervisors are essential elements of a healthy, satisfying and productive work environment.
Both performance and job satisfaction are affected by the quality of communication and relationships between nurses and physicians. The collaboration between physicians and nurses is a significant element of a positive hospital environment that retains excellent employees.
In addition, working relationships between nurses and their supervisors are directly associated with nurses' turnover intention. The principle carries over even beyond hospital settings. Employees with high-quality employee-manager relationships have been shown to be more likely to remain in their workgroup. This is good news for retaining employees; when leadership is consistent and long term, employees are more apt to stay. However, if the manager leaves the organization, the employees close to the manager may be more likely to leave. Thus, employees having strong relationships with their peers is important as well, in order to increase their likelihood of staying even after a leadership succession occurs.
Ultimately for hospitals and health care organizations, the significance of quality relationships within immediate workgroups is linked to increased patient care and satisfaction. Poor collaboration influences patient outcomes and lack of collaboration between physicians and nurses decreases the satisfaction levels of patients and family members.
Fortunately, implementing strategies that increase collaboration and communication in a work environment can help reduce turnover costs and maximize excellence in patient care. In Part 3 of this blog series, we'll look at implementing solutions to improve communication, collaboration and conflict resolution and, ultimately, overall culture in the healthcare setting.
For additional research, statistics and details, complete the form below to download the full DCS white paper “The Culture Cost: Reducing Employee Turnover by Improving Hospital Culture.”