During The Question-And-Answer Period Of A Presentation You Should Not 7 Most Common Nurse Retention Mistakes

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7 Most Common Nurse Retention Mistakes

I have met many of today’s most influential nurse leaders, human resource professionals and healthcare executives, and I have spoken with hundreds, perhaps thousands, of industry experts.

I often wonder why these industry power houses all struggle with the same problem – recruiting and retaining skilled nurses – and why they repeat the same disastrous mistakes. I recently discovered the answer to my question during a seminar by LeAnn Thieman, author of the best seller “Chicken Soup for the Nurse’s Soul,” during the Texas Organization of Nurse Executives Annual Conference.

The presentation inspired me to write “7 common nurse resume mistakes,” which drew inspiration from many experts I met, including Thieman. I hope this simple, yet meaningful guide will help organizations find practical solutions to the real problem of recruiting and retaining quality nurses.

How many of the 7 most common mistakes do you recognize in your organization?

1. Inadequate staffing levels

Many hospitals today are struggling to find and retain nurses. The reasons are many: staff reductions in the 1990s were used to offset rising health care costs, a lack of teaching nurses in colleges, and perhaps less interest in the profession among Millennials. Regardless of the cause, the result is the same when there is a long period of inadequate nurse staffing levels. As existing staff absorb the workload, stress increases and job satisfaction decreases, resulting in greater turnover. And so the cycle continues. We have been contacted by hospitals that have tried for years to maintain the correct nurse-to-patient ratio, but despite their efforts, the problem has worsened. They were disappointed; nurses are unhappy, and patient satisfaction suffers, along with patient safety.

With all its complexity and constant change, today’s healthcare environment requires a new approach. One focuses on a multi-faceted recruiting and retention plan that begins by determining the appropriate nurse staffing ratios for your facility, setting recruiting and retention targets and using proven short-term and long-term method of recruiting.

2. Underrated training programs

Many clients find that even when they have training programs in place, the results are mixed. Nurse trainees are not as productive or satisfied in their new positions as expected. Why? It may be because the training is not adapted enough to prepare nurses for the full range of duties and expectations that will ultimately determine the success of their organization.

What better way to learn this than from a co-worker and fellow nurse who is currently succeeding at work. I recommend our clients adopt a nurse preceptor program. Start by asking yourself, “Who in my organization do I want more of?” Then narrow your candidate pool by determining who has the character to teach. These are your preceptors. They are strong nurses who are willing to participate.

Remember, a good nurse is not necessarily a good trainer. We teach all of our nurse placements specific communication skills and learning applications to prepare them for preceptor roles. Find these skills in your employees or consider training them. Then, don’t forget to adjust your preceptors’ workloads to meet their new responsibilities, so they don’t experience rapid burnout.

3. Cultural disaster

Every organization has dominant values, beliefs and attitudes that define it and guide its practices. A worker who believes in those values ​​can strengthen the organization, as well as co-workers. However, someone who is out of step with the company culture can lower morale and hinder the effectiveness of your nurse team. In a high-stress, fast-paced environment where coworkers rely on a fully functioning team, cultural fit is critical. So, whether you’re onboarding staff or relying on an agency to train travel or international nurses, look for a strong clinical program and culture that aligns with your organization. Ask how nurses are trained on the job, so you know they will fit seamlessly into the US health care system and understand the needs of American patients. Are your nurses ready for the assignment to effectively address the health concerns of Americans and the expectations of their healthcare providers? Do they understand the role of relationships and empathy?

Ensuring that your organization’s culture is aligned will strengthen the performance of your nursing team and strengthen long-term sustainability.

4. Loss of pay and career opportunities

Not everyone is motivated by money, but recruitment and retention problems are guaranteed if your nurse compensation package doesn’t keep up with market competitors. Remember, compensation means different things to different people. So, whether it’s salary, bonuses, shift schedules or time off, find out what your competitors are offering and match or exceed that to ensure you don’t lose your best nurses. .

5. Strategic planning that doesn’t

The best nurses are often the hardest to recruit, and the hardest to keep. You need a plan. Involve all stakeholders in developing your strategic solutions, especially the nurses on the floor. Think beyond your usual approach. Consider all the options before deciding what is best for your organization. Can hiring bonuses work? Can they help build a long-term, strong nursing team? What role will international nurses play? How do you measure the effectiveness of your strategies?

6. Boomers vs. Millennials

By now, we all know that these two very different generations talk, work and think, well…very differently. But, what does that mean for your organization and how do you prepare your nursing team? Developing relationships outside of our comfortable, niche groups doesn’t come naturally for most adults – especially Boomers. After all, we spent a lot of time developing certain styles and patterns, and we appreciate those who think alike. Without enough motivation, that will not change. Boomers need to look beyond the “lack of work ethic” they see in their younger counterparts, and Millennials need to think beyond “Boomers who just resist change. ” To maximize the contribution of each generation, your organization must help facilitate dialogue that fosters understanding and appreciation of each group’s contribution. Only then will you have a fully functioning, cross-generational team.

7. Overly aggressive competitors

A client located in a state complained to me that, when he thought he had won the nurse-shortage war, a competitor from a neighboring state stakes a nearby hotel, and recruits and interviews his nurses – who offered hiring bonuses and better work schedules. My answer to that is to address items 1 through 6 above.

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