Explore our Embrace Joy resource hub for inspiring ways to encourage your healthcare teams.
Real-time recognition is the driving force of the Wambi platform. Our holistic solution impacts patients, frontline staff, and every member of your organization.
Our innovative employee recognition solution leverages gamification to positively transform the employee experience. Calculate your ROI, explore data insights, and read more about our success stories.
From illuminating case studies to interactive workbooks, improve overall well-being and inform cultural best practices at your organization with these essential healthcare resources.
Embrace joy…in small moments. Embrace joy…in challenging times. Embrace joy…in celebrations & traditions. Embrace joy every day.
Reports touting the benefits of mindfulness are everywhere these days. Mindfulness is said to be a cure for pretty much everything that ails us: stress, anxiety, depression, pain, sleeplessness, poor memory, difficulty focusing, compassion fatigue, impaired immune function…the list goes on. And there is a corresponding proliferation of apps designed to support us through a healing mindfulness journey. This cacophony of offerings and purported benefits can be overwhelming, and induce a fair bit of skepticism as well.
Digging into the science of mindfulness, it turns out that some of these claims are very well supported. Jon Kabat-Zinn’s Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program has over 40 years of accumulated evidence. Well-documented results include reduced emotional reactivity, improved ability to cope with stress, and increased ability to manage pain levels. Similarly, Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy has been tied to reduced rumination and worry. Most encouraging to me is the evidence that certain mindfulness practices, like lovingkindness meditation, can increase compassion – both for self and others.
Over this past, very stressful 18 months, I’ve tried several different mindfulness techniques, and have found some to be incredibly challenging, and others to be very beneficial. I’ll share a few ideas below, with the caveat that everyone is different. Some of these might work very well for you, and others might not. Also, as with anything, you should speak with your doctor before beginning a mindfulness practice, as there is evidence of negative impacts for those suffering from certain mental health conditions.
Here are four types of mindfulness techniques to try:
S = Stop. When you feel yourself getting upset, agitated, anxious, etc., pause what you’re doing for a moment.
T = Take a few deep breaths. When we’re upset, our breathing gets shallow, and our blood pressure increases. Deep breathing can slow things down, creating a sense of calm.
O= Observe your experience, thoughts, and feelings. How are your emotions showing up in your body? What story are you telling yourself? As Mark Twain once said, “I’ve been through some terrible things in my life, some of which actually happened.” Our minds make up all sorts of stories, and not all of them serve us.
P = Proceed with something that will support you in the moment. You might need a break or something to eat. Or maybe a hug or conversation with a friend would be most helpful. Once we understand our experience and get the support we need, we can move forward with grace.
Exploring these and other mindfulness techniques may help you find a quick solution, or it may be a longer journey that allows you to get to know yourself better. I’ll admit that at the beginning of the pandemic I was skeptical about mindfulness because of the press and hype. Fortunately, through both research and personal trial and error, I’m now convinced that there is a mindfulness practice for everyone, and the benefits truly are transforming.
As our Product Evangelist, Mel brings over 13 years of experience to support the growth and development of Wambi’s sales team as they seek to help healthcare organizations create cultures of appreciation and kindness. She is committed to helping both her team and Wambi’s clients achieve their business objectives while living Wambi’s values of compassion, imagination, gratitude, fearlessness, and joy. Mel’s sales experience spans healthcare, technology, legal, and academic content solutions. She has been a consistent top performer and is most proud of her work fostering innovation, evolution, and team cohesiveness in each role. Mel grew up in West Michigan, where she still lives and enjoys running through the beautiful, wooded dunes. She received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan. When she’s not exercising or spending time with her family, you can find her indulging in her love of learning about anything and everything.
As healthcare staff retention continues to be a challenge, leaders are prioritizing engagement now more than ever. When thinking about engagement, our focus is not only on building relationships between people, but also, on connecting individuals with their purpose. A Japanese concept called Ikigai means “that which gives your life worth, meaning, or purpose.” For healthcare workers, engaging with their Ikigai and being connected to why they chose the healthcare industry is vital.
During Wambi’s Humans at Work in Healthcare panel discussion, leaders across the country shared how engagement is playing a critical role in their hospital systems. Paula Pritzl, Chief Human Resources Officer at Marshfield Health Clinic System shared, “Our [focus] is engagement and having our managers and our leaders engaged with our workforce. We want them to know that we care.”
A common theme amongst all panelists explored ways they are helping team members reconnect with their why, which rings true to Ikigai:
Each panelist shared the importance of connecting with their team members in a genuine and authentic way, which often requires leaders to show vulnerability. When speaking about being vulnerable, Zane Zumbahlen Chief Human Resources and Talent Officer at Cancer Treatment Centers of America shared, “If we’re not doing it as leaders, our team members certainly aren’t going to do it, or the leaders that we support won’t do it; so I take it upon myself to try to lean into that and [connect] more often because I’ve got to create the space and the aperture for others to really authentically feel.” Showing vulnerability provides opportunities to have honest and meaningful conversations.
With the stress and uncertainty team members in healthcare experience daily, it is important to acknowledge how they are feeling. According to Ophelia Byers, Vice President & Chief Nursing Officer at New York-Presbyterian, this starts by “Asking more questions and asking better questions.” Byers makes a point to have intentional conversations with her team members and encourages leaders to embrace the reality their staff are facing and respond thoughtfully. Be understanding that not everyone will want to share.
With so many responsibilities during work and outside of work, it is important to remind team members to be present with their patients and to focus on the now. “Take the beauty in what we do and make sure everyone resonates with what we do every day,” shares Zumbahlen.
Throughout the panel, the common theme of powerful moments reminded each of the healthcare leaders why they do what they do. Reflecting on the moments that make a difference in people’s lives and sharing those stories with others is powerful.
“An experience is a matter of creating emotion and feelings and each interaction we have with our care givers is an opportunity to create an experience,” shares Sebastien Girard, Chief People Officer at Centura Health.
These moments and experiences will not only make a difference in the lives of those receiving the care but also those providing it. “These are the things that matter: how do we open up our heart, how do we connect in a real way, how do we use those moments to fuel us and to fight and combat fatigue?” shared Zumbahlen.
At Wambi, we believe Moments Move Us. Our healthcare recognition platform provides opportunities to improve hospital culture and reduce nurse burnout by fostering a sense of belonging. We focus on moments of connection and provide team members and leaders opportunities to share appreciation and gratitude, which serves as a reminder as to why the work they do is vitally important.
The more emphasis the healthcare industry places on emotional health and well-being, the more you’ll see a thriving, inspired workplace with strong organizational performance and team effectiveness. Request a demo today to see how Wambi’s culture transformation solution supports your patient care and employee engagement strategy.
Of the many lessons gleaned during the pandemic, one of the most profound is the importance of human connection. Human connection is vital in the promotion of health and wellbeing, not only for patients, but also for those that provide the care. In the context of healthcare, empathy indicates the presence of connection, while loneliness depicts the absence of connection. Over the past year, we’ve seen an uptick of loneliness within healthcare ecosystems. Between social distancing, masking, reduced visitation, and the overall limitations around opportunities to connect, COVID accelerated the feelings of loneliness and lack of connection that already pervaded our modern lifestyles pre-pandemic. The state of isolation precipitated by the pandemic has been the perfect breeding ground for loneliness.
Experts agree the #1 solution for addressing burnout, whether spurred by the lack of connection or high turnover, is to create positive work environments and develop opportunities for clinicians to give and receive meaningful recognition from peers, patients, and their families alike. It is crucial for healthcare leaders to provide a bridge between their team members and patients and families that is mutually beneficial to the wellbeing of both parties. And investing in a recognition system like Wambi, a solution designed specifically with the needs of the healthcare community in mind, is proven to mitigate the experience of loneliness and drive empathy among healthcare organizations. Here are more recommendations to strengthen human connection among staff and lend to better care operations:
It’s not enough to have a recognition program in place. In order to enact lasting, transformational change at your organization, an adoption plan must be shared out organizationally. Leaders can introduce a roadmap for how your recognition system works as early as the onboarding stage, as well as carve time out daily or weekly for veteran staff to devote to 15-minutes of recognizing a colleague. A user who is a nurse leader reads a Wambi every week at team huddles to celebrate the individual and establish a feeling of gratitude among all team members. When you standardize recognition practices org-wide, you are telling your staff that recognition is a priority.
We’ve learned from past healthcare experience panels that targeted intervention programs are needed to mitigate burnout. On top of the social isolation, team members have expressed frustration in not having enough resources to help them handle their emotional needs. Educating team members through formal and expert-led skills trainings will only improve the quality of care at your hospital ecosystem, thereby improving feelings of isolation that tend to surface during volatile times. These well-being trainings, especially ones that develop and nurture emotional intelligence, teach team members coping mechanisms to better handle crisis while giving them a framework for how to be more empathetic.
A powerful way for your team members to improve active listening towards their patients’ stories is by witnessing their leaders displaying the same kind of undivided intention to their concerns.
Discuss the role emotional intelligence plays in shaping experience with patients and among colleagues. Remind your staff to actively listen to their patients, and of its influence on patient health.
Human connections are key to the promotion of health and prevention of illness; conversely, illness can deteriorate those connections. Healthcare professional–patient relationships are key to ensuring the preservation of adequate human interactions. It is important for healthcare professionals to continually develop their ability to foster gratifying human connections because they provide social support for patients during their time of need, and they help prevent work-related stress. By focusing on this basic human need, you can improve the human experience for all.
How do you welcome and integrate new employees into the fabric of your workplace? What can you do to make your onboarding feel meaningful? Human resource experts ERE Media disclosed that 67% of companies do not offer any kind of recognition during onboarding. Ensuring an excellent onboarding experience is key to your employee engagement and retention strategy. When new team members feel immediate connection to your organizational values and their team from day one, they are poised for long-term success.
To transform onboarding and orientation from a stressful time into a welcoming experience, leverage an established recognition platform like Wambi. Recognition platforms perfectly complement your onboarding strategy to make new team members feel a sense of belonging from the moment they arrive. Remember, first impressions count and are more important than ever in helping to increase retention in healthcare. Here are three ways having a recognition system in place to welcome team members will strengthen your onboarding experience:
Having an employee recognition solution offers employees a way to stay engaged and connect with colleagues they have yet to be formally introduced to. Wambi’s Client Relationship Director, Zach Falk, shared: “Early in my onboarding agenda, one of the top priorities was logging into our own Wambi site. Now I see why that was so important. It provided me a way to engage with my new teammates and get to know them straight away. The Wambi platform also set the tone, from day one, that a gratitude-centric culture pervaded this organization. Various team members offered me such a warm welcome through the Wambis they sent me, and every time I got that ping on my phone, it reminded me how happy I was about my choice to join this group.” Learn more about how Wambi works here.
Utilize an employee recognition solution to enable new hires to genuinely connect to company ethos. Wambi’s Senior HR Manager, April Rosentreter, expressed her gratitude for having the Wambi employee recognition platform internally for team use: “The Wambi platform has become a crucial component of our internal new hire onboarding experience. I’ve heard from some of our newest team members that it really helps to set the tone for an “attitude of gratitude” and affirms their decision to join our mission-driven company. It shows our core values authentically being lived, felt, and recognized versus a scripted façade. It’s also an inspirational tool for learning about all the amazing progress across departments and even illuminates how the new hire might contribute or provide new perspective. And last but certainly not least, as a remote team, it’s indispensable when welcoming new team members and making introductions.” Having an employee recognition tool as early as onboarding also demonstrates accessible performance metrics from the get-go, which means employees don’t have to wait until quarterly or annual performance reviews to get feedback from managers.
From the first moment a new hire joins your team, you should be working to foster a sense of inclusion and support. At Wambi, cultivating compassion encourages employees to be more patient with leadership and other departments alike, which in turn leads to a healthier and happier workforce. Showing compassion not only has helped build understanding and resilience but is a constant reminder of the importance of Wambi’s work and elevating moments that move us as a community of like-minded individuals. It gets people pumped to contribute and perpetually reminds us why we are all here.
According to Renee Thompson, CEO at the Healthy Workforce Institute, the importance of welcoming new employees cannot be overstated because onboarding is a tremendous opportunity to instill a sense of belonging to foster resilience. We challenge you to treat someone’s first day/first week/first month as a long-awaited special occasion deserving of attention and invite you to note how your workplace morale improves!
Interested in building resilience? Download the Resilience Workbook for more ideas on how to build a more resilient workforce.
Interested in building resilience? Download the Resilience Workbook for more ideas on how to build a more resilient workforce.
If you want to highlight a culture that is built on gratitude, inclusion, and compassion, invest in a recognition solution today. With Wambi, you’ll be giving an Onboarding Strategy roadmap as part of your client onboarding experience. The tool will give you specifics on how to incorporate Wambi into your onboarding strategy. Plus, Wambi is the only healthcare-specific recognition solution that connects patients, peers, and leaders through the power of gratitude to improve the human experience for everyone in your organization. Request a demo with us to get the ball rolling on enhancing your onboarding process.
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