I know, I know, it’s been a really tough year! It might be time to talk about how to reduce workplace stress and make work more fun.
If that goal sounds out of reach, it’s really not. It doesn’t take a lot of work or money to raise spirits around the practice and make your staff (and you!) feel like they are having more fun and receiving more recognition for their hard work and results. I think once you get rolling on these ideas, you’ll find that you’re enjoying yourself. You might even find that one or two staff are the most suited to run these activities and you can delegate!
Why It’s Worth the Investment:
Stress and lack of employee recognition are two of the top reasons employees leave their jobs. Making a fun and productive work environment can reduce turnover. Plus, it will increase morale!
Dip into any of these ideas and add your own to the list.
Ice Cream Sundae Bar or Lunch:
Set a practice-wide goal such as a monthly collection or visits total. When the practice hits the goal, bring in lunch for the staff or have an ice cream sundae bar in the practice.
Have a theme day in the office where all staff dress up. If you care to, you can include a small budget of ten or fifteen dollars for staff to go to the dollar store or a thrift store to buy some items for the theme. You can tie these dress-up days into themes for the kids, such as beach day or zoo day. Then the kids all participate in games on the same theme for that day. Invite your staff to participate in this event by having them choose the themes.
Set Individual Staff Goals:
Establish a weekly or monthly goal for individual employees. When they make their goal, acknowledge them and present them with an inexpensive prize like a five or ten dollar gift card to Starbucks, Amazon, Target, and so on. This can make for a very fun presentation ceremony during a staff meeting.
Acknowledge and Commend:
Never underestimate how valuable simple acknowledgment and commendations are for your staff. Thank staff specifically at staff meetings for their contributions, or issue a memo outlining their special deeds or accomplishments.
You can even make acknowledgements into a fun game! There’s a book called How Full is Your Bucket? This book suggests a fun way of acknowledging staff, drop by drop. Here’s what that means. You create a stack of small paper notes that look like drops. You’re going to write acknowledgements or thank-you’s to the staff on these notes and hand them out. Drop by acknowledgement-drop, you’re filling their buckets and their hearts!
These don’t have to be for big accomplishments—it could be for something as simple as going out of their way to help a patient or another staff member. Tidying up an area that wasn’t theirs to tidy. Being cheerful on a stressful day. You get the idea.
Birthdays and Holidays:
Celebrate staff birthdays with a cake and mini-party! Hand out a gift card to the birthday boy or girl. Around holidays, choose a holiday theme and organize pot luck lunches around these. Invite the staff to get creative (especially fun around Halloween!).
Special tip: If you encourage your employees to decide on the goals, prizes, and themes they’d enjoy, they will feel more engaged in the activity.
For more advice on making work fun and productive at your private practice, visit our free Lemonade webinar library for Pediatric Private Practice Owners.