Motivating staff

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    Does anyone have any pearls of wisdom for motivating staff? I am considering working at a ltc facility that has a lot of room for improvement. During my interview with the DON, she was telling me they are looking to "raise the bar" at this facility. I like a challenge, and thats why I am interested. Any ideas out there? This is going to be a weekend supervisor position.
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    I am assuming that there are mostly CNA's/techs and perhaps one nurse per shift? As a former CNA, I can tell you that adequate pay and staffing, as well as respect for a very tough job go a long way to motivate. If you can't influence the first two, please implement the third! Being an aide was physically hard, draining work that was often thankless. I got more respect and kindness from the patients than from management. I wish you much luck!
    SE_BSN_RN, tewdles, pixie120, and 1 other like this.
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    Thank you for replying. I always have supported my CNA's, I was an aide once myself and know how tough a job it is. My CNA's have been my eyes and ears, they are very much appreciated. I was mainly referring to motivating nurses to act professional and do what they are supposed to do for their patients.
    tewdles, pixie120, and nola1202 like this.
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    Quote from surfnbeagle
    Thank you for replying. I always have supported my CNA's, I was an aide once myself and know how tough a job it is. My CNA's have been my eyes and ears, they are very much appreciated. I was mainly referring to motivating nurses to act professional and do what they are supposed to do for their patients.
    As weekend manager, I would make sure that first I model the behavior I want them to do. I have worked as W/E manager recently, I came in on time, told the staff I was there, asked what the issues are/aren/t and gave report re admissions/discharges. I toured/took phone calls from the hospitals for admissions, and then I made sure I answered the phone and supervised the staff by being visible on the unit. To raise the bar, you have to start with what the knowledge level of your staff is and start educating/training them. Assist them with the diffiucult dressings/wounds, monitor the cna's and make sure the white boards have names of staff, rooms assigned and break/lunch times, and then check your break room often for staff just hanging out "cuz it's slow". I am never above bribing, I have ordered pizza for a job well done, passed out candy and assisted with answering calllights and toileting residents. BUT I had to learn NOT to do their jobs and hold them accountable, firmly, fairly and consistently and quietly/professionally. I also had to learn to say "no" in a nice way and hand the delegated task right back to the primary nruse and help her/him understand why it is his/her responsiblity. It takes skill, confidence and assurance that you are doing the right thing, which is always better care for the resident. WHen staff give you a hard time, always bring them back to "we are here for the resident", don't fall into the trap of hearing his side, then her side then blah, blah blah. I hate drama, I don't tolerate it and I don't condone it. Leave written report for the DON and the RCM's and call the DON often during the weekend for any issues that come up. DON"T allow staff splitting. Send the non -nursing staff to the administrator or MOD, nursing doesn't need to be involved in that petty drama, intervene when required but delegate that right back to THEIR supervisor.
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    Quote from pixie120
    As weekend manager, I would make sure that first I model the behavior I want them to do. I have worked as W/E manager recently, I came in on time, told the staff I was there, asked what the issues are/aren/t and gave report re admissions/discharges. I toured/took phone calls from the hospitals for admissions, and then I made sure I answered the phone and supervised the staff by being visible on the unit. To raise the bar, you have to start with what the knowledge level of your staff is and start educating/training them. Assist them with the diffiucult dressings/wounds, monitor the cna's and make sure the white boards have names of staff, rooms assigned and break/lunch times, and then check your break room often for staff just hanging out "cuz it's slow". I am never above bribing, I have ordered pizza for a job well done, passed out candy and assisted with answering calllights and toileting residents. BUT I had to learn NOT to do their jobs and hold them accountable, firmly, fairly and consistently and quietly/professionally. I also had to learn to say "no" in a nice way and hand the delegated task right back to the primary nruse and help her/him understand why it is his/her responsiblity. It takes skill, confidence and assurance that you are doing the right thing, which is always better care for the resident. WHen staff give you a hard time, always bring them back to "we are here for the resident", don't fall into the trap of hearing his side, then her side then blah, blah blah. I hate drama, I don't tolerate it and I don't condone it. Leave written report for the DON and the RCM's and call the DON often during the weekend for any issues that come up. DON"T allow staff splitting. Send the non -nursing staff to the administrator or MOD, nursing doesn't need to be involved in that petty drama, intervene when required but delegate that right back to THEIR supervisor.
    wow exellent response. I am in the learning process and have been sucked into unit drama, I have trouble telling sick employees to suck it up and deal. They are dealing with the double bind of call in and you must have a Dr.'s note or be written up or let go if it happens more than once or twice. I have been taken advantage of by individuals who insist they were confused by the schedule and don't show up until 4 hours later, then tell you they can't work a 12 or 8 as assigned for the next day because they had plans, didn't know they were on the schedule. Frankly we do have a difficult schedule design which has been improved but confusion and errors happen frequently on the part of the scheduling staff. The result mass chaos, if someone does come in for a sudden call in, they tell the people already there they need to go to another unit, not them as it is their assigned unit. Result angry employees all round. I will in the future tell them up front that they will be required to work whatever unit they are assigned but I suspect they will choose to not work. I don't want to adapt the mgmt style that uses intimidation and heavy handed managment styles. Often these are young kids on their first job, and brand new nurses. I would rather educate and motivate. However I am comming to see, for those who do show up and are responsible, work is hell because of all the call in's, people going home sick. (could be faking, figure that out later when it's the same people) I see I need to be firm, and fair and upfront about what I expect. Follow up and spend time doing my own work. I'm afraid that spending time in the office will make me seem lazy and uninterested. I do have to spend time alone making calls for absent employees, filling in unexpected holes in staffing, and doing my work. This is a tough balance to find.
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    My first weekend and I survived! Actually, it went well. I am trying to be proactive, did a lot of rounds, answered lights, and tried to role model professional behavior. Some of the nurses have told me they are being told by management they will be let go. I don't believe in ruling by fear, I agree educate and motivate. People coming in late, etc...frequent communication with the scheduler at this point. And management knows who is late by the time clock printout they receive on Monday. What I have been told by management is that there is poor follow-up on the nurse's part, and also unprofessional conduct at the desk. Thats where the role modeling comes in.
    tewdles and nola1202 like this.
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    one night we had a difficult staffing situation, after much debate and CNAs bickering among themselves 2 CNAs just stood up did the right thing and just got the job done, without regard to fairness in the assignments. Wanting to reward them, I really didn't have anything handy so I just gave them both a dollar bill. And thanked them for their hard work and for just getting the job done.

    I think respect and acknowledgement of some one's effort goes a long way.
    nola1202 and pixie120 like this.
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    CNA's Rock!
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    Quote from nola1202
    CNA's Rock!
    I cannot stress this enough. I started in health care as a CNA. I had a 4 year college degree, worked as a CNA and went back to school very slowly to get first LPN, then RN. I was treated any of many, many ways. IF one, as a NURSE, do NOT treat one's CNA's like the adults that they are, they will NOT assist one. IF one treats them like gold (that they are) they will tell you EVERYTHING, one will NEVER miss another pressure wound, new bruise, skin tear, incident report etc etc etc. This is true especially as a nurse manager and DON. (and goes DOUBLE for assisted living, they ARE the med techs passing the meds). OPEN that door, DON't let nurses attend your DON/CNA meetings, and provide a forum for the CNA to talk freely about everything. I would also say this included housekeepers too, has anyone heard the old saying (from hospitals) "If you want to know what is going on in your building, ask a housekeeper?:.
    The nurses that I have watched fail are the ones with their heads buried in the MAR (yet still miss critical meds), DON'T engage or have a dialogue with their staff/cna's who they are SUPPOSED to be leading/supervising, and DON't thank the cna every time the cna works (not kidding here). THey are the backbone of health care, and of nursing. THey are an extension of your nursing license. By law, we are held responsible for the care they give, under our supervision and license. My question is... how long does one wish to keep their current license? If for a lifetime, without censure, then get on board with the CNA's.
    itthybitthythpider likes this.


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