Ask anyone working in healthcare and they will tell you they are busier than ever. Whether at the front lines of patient care or in the C-suite, healthcare is changing fast, steeped in regulation, and doesn’t show signs of slowing down any time soon. This is a reality that is having a huge impact on organizational culture at a macro level and burnout in the individuals. While the pace doesn’t show signs of slowing, there are things that leaders can do, such as to celebrate success, to mitigate some of the negative effects on the culture and the people within the organization.
There is a strong tendency to move from one priority to the next, without slowing long enough to celebrate successes. This frenzied pace promotes exhaustion and burnout. One of the best ways to avoid this is to plan celebrations along the way. These celebrations don’t have to be huge events, but can provide time to pause and focus on how far you’ve come.
This whole concept came to life for me recently when doing a workshop with senior leaders. I asked them to name some of their successes. Silence. Then someone mentioned the EMR launch. Another mentioned a building project. Should I assume that they didn’t have many successes? No. It was a symptom of a pervasive mindset within the culture. One of them spoke up and said, “We have a lot of successes, we just don’t stop long enough to celebrate them.” This statement was followed by a lively discussion about what that indicated about their current culture and what they had to do to change the dynamic.
The bottom line is that leaders must plan for and engage in celebration. Everyone is working hard. Celebrate organizational achievement.