There is an old saying that managing employees would be so much easier if it were not for the people! Of course that is not true for the most part, however, supervising employees can be a stressful job.
There is an old saying that managing employees would be so much easier if it were not for the people! Of course that is not true for the most part, however, supervising employees can be a stressful job. When you factor in different personalities, work ethics, unavoidable outside forces, client care, it is a wonder anyone does it! Below are several tips on how to supervise effectively (and not make yourself crazy in the process):
- Communicate clearly. Almost every issue in the workplace is caused or exacerbated by someone’s communication that is unclear, too late, too early, non-existent, etc. Make sure your message is clear by communicating your organization’s vision and goals, and guiding others to accomplish them.
- Listen! Take the time to truly listen to your employees. Learn to listen twice as much as you talk. One of the first signs of an organization in trouble is that communications break down. Err on the side of too much communication, rather than not enough.
- Prepare! Nothing can create a more peaceful workday than having everything well-organized. Figure out what is not in place, fix it, and make it work for you. If you are not the organizing type, get a co-worker’s help. They will feel flattered and you will benefit by being better prepared for each day.
- Prioritize! Recognize what is important from what is urgent. As you well know, in healthcare, nothing is ever predictable. Expect the unexpected.
- Address issues as they arise. Convey performance issues as they occur. It is not fair to the rest of your employees or clients if someone is falling behind in job performance. Be specific about what you saw that you consider being a performance problem. Follow your organization’s steps for performance counseling and address issues accordingly.
- Praise accomplishments. Take the time to recognize acknowledgments. Saying “thank you” goes a long way in making a good nursing assistant feel appreciated and valued. Write a handwritten note, or provide a treat such as a pizza party. Your nurse aides work hard and deserve to have some occasional fun.
- Recognize your own signs of stress. Take care of yourself so you can take care of others. Health care professionals experience a particularly high level of stress. You are both a manager and a caregiver. Pay attention to your stress level, and know when to “time out.”
How do you survive being a supervisor? What tips do you have for being an effective leader? Please send your comments along. We would love to hear from you!