Monday, February 11, 2013
Keeping your nursing team engaged and motivated can be difficult, particularly if your department is short-staffed or includes temporary or floating nurses. Identifying the factors that motivate your staff and the barriers that can make it difficult for them to perform their jobs effectively can help you develop a plan to improve performance and morale.
Taking advantages of your staff’s strengths can help your nurses feel more confident and accomplished, and can increase the efficiency of your entire unit. When nurses are assigned jobs suited to their strengths, tasks can be completed in a shorter period of time, providing staff with more time to complete other assignments. For example, assigning confused or disoriented patients to a nurse who enjoys working with these types of patients can help increase patient cooperativeness and reduce the need for multiple employees to be involved in minor care issues. A nurse who has expertise in a particular area of patient care can serve as a valuable resource and mentor for other nurses.
It can be difficult to keep everyone informed about clinical updates, policy changes, and other job-related news, particularly if nurses work on different shifts. While the most important information is conveyed during shift change meetings, you may find that there is not enough time to cover topics unrelated to patient care during these meetings. It may be impractical to hold a weekly staff meeting, due to the varying shifts your nurses work, but you can still keep employees up-to-date by other means. Using email and texts can help inform staff members of pressing issues, while a private blog can be effective in providing information on clinical and nursing issues. No matter what method you use to communicate with staff, keep everyone informed, including temporary nurses, unit secretaries, nursing assistants and other members of the nursing team.