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Three Tips for Increasing Employee Engagement at Your Practice


Boosting employee engagement at your medical practice will boost staff motivation, commitment, and performance.

I love my job. I love that I get to be myself and that I’ve never been expected to fit a “company mold.” I love that I’m surrounded by the most talented and inspiring people I’ve ever met. I love that so many people are interested in seeing me succeed and give me feedback around my strengths and areas for improvement. I could go on and on and on.

The people around me love their jobs, too. In fact, on our most recent employee satisfaction survey, 92 percent of the organization said they’re satisfied with their job.

Unfortunately, I’ve discovered that this is more the exception than the rule. I was shocked to learn that only 30 percent of U.S. workers like their jobs!

We focus heavily on engagement, not just because we want our people to like their jobs, but because it makes good business sense. Engaged workers are more likely to be motivated, to stay committed to their employers, and to help achieve business goals.

A Gallup study found engaged workers are:
• 18 percent more productive
• 16 percent more profitable
• 37 percent less prone to absenteeism
• 12 percent better at engaging customers
• 51 percent less likely to leave

If you want your people to love their jobs, here are a few things you can do to make your practice a great place to work:

Start with the interview. When you’re hiring a new team member, of course you’ll start by looking for someone with the needed experience or clinical skills. But you can’t stop there. You also need to find the right cultural fit.

One indicator of highly engaged employees is an understanding of how their job makes a contribution to the goals of the organization or practice. During the interview process, it’s important to discuss how the position impacts the organization as a whole.

Don’t overlook the onboarding process. Once you hire the right person, it’s your responsibility to help him get up to speed and integrated into the practice. Engaged employees report having the tools and resources to do the job and the processes to help them be successful.

Do you have the necessary equipment, referral networks, and support? Have you clearly laid out the protocol for all of the necessary processes in your practice? If not, your team can quickly become disengaged. 

Create a lasting relationship. Practices that do a good job at hiring and onboarding are successful because they are deliberate in their efforts. The same is true of those who build trusting relationships. And that requires a plan. For me, that means scheduling one-on-ones with team members. This creates regular and reoccurring opportunities for alignment, goal setting, development, and recognition. I also calendar time for less formal interactions like office walk-throughs and celebrating successes.

This hasn’t always been natural for me. I had to practice. Building strong, trusting relationships comes through consistency and candor. I am open with my team, both in discussing strengths and weaknesses. Over the years, I’ve gotten better at coaching and providing regular and useful feedback on performance, and as a result the team has gotten stronger.

This stuff works. For the past five years, my organization has been recognized by Fortune magazine for our employee engagement and workplace. This year, we were ranked 16 in the country on the magazine’s list of “Best Places to Work For.” Here’s how we celebrated.

I love my job. I hope you do, too.

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