In the healthcare industry, good communication can literally be a matter of life or death. It’s not always that dramatic, but the fact is, miscommunication can lead to serious issues for patients, can increase patient dissatisfaction, and can even lead to financial losses for the facility. Vast improvements won’t happen with the snap of your fingers, but there are several ways you can begin improving communication between your staff members.
Understand What’s Broken
Before you can improve communication, you need to understand where your current methods of communication might be breaking down. If there are obvious gaps, inventory them. If you’ve heard staff members making similar complaints, notate those issues. It could also be worthwhile to implement an anonymous survey asking staff where they think communication challenges lie in their daily processes. Asking for their input and listening to what they say also clearly demonstrates that you are serious about improving communication.
Address Communication Issues Directly
Once you have a handle on where communication is breaking down, start making plans to close those gaps. Fixes could be as simple as holding huddles at the start of every shift or it could require much more complicated strategies. The important thing is to take what you’ve learned from your research and employee input and start making plans.
If you have too many methods and channels for communicating, messages will get lost in the shuffle. Consolidate your communication channels into one platform, preferably mobile-based since your staff is on the move throughout their entire shift. Look into investing in HIPAA-compliant mobile communication apps that allow for peer-to-peer, top-down and bottom-up communication.
Prioritize Face-to-Face Communication
Yes, mobile communication tools are important, but nothing is as good as old-fashioned, face-to-face communication. In-person meetings are important for establishing effective communication, but they are not always practical. If you can’t hold staff meetings, hold brief one-on-one meetings with each team member once per month and maximize the face-to-face conversations you do have with staff during the day.
Don’t Let Poor Communication Cost You Great Employees
Poor communication often leads to employee dissatisfaction. For more tips on improving communication and team spirit, or to access top healthcare professionals in Ontario, contact the expert recruiters at Employment Professionals Canada online or call 1-800-842-0421 today. We look forward to helping you achieve your strategic recruiting goals.