BY ANNE LLEWELLYN, MS, BHSA, RN, CCM, CRRN, CMGT-BC, BCPA, FCM
Have you lost your passion? Don’t look forward to going to work? Dread talking to patients, their families or healthcare team members, as they bring you more work? If these feelings fit your current outlook, read on!
The healthcare industry has always been a challenging area to work in because our work involves helping people who are sick, stressed, vulnerable and have complex needs that we cannot address due to the fragmented and healthcare system.
Most of us learn how to put things into perspective and do the best we can with the tools we have. Generally, leadership listens and tries to improve the environment, helps us manage stress, supports us as we deal with challenges and ensures their teams know they are appreciated.
Then COVID hit, and the challenges we were barely coping with increased. As a result, people left their jobs as they felt they could no longer cope. Even those who continued to work lost their spark and wondered if their efforts were really making a difference.
As the nation’s healthcare workforce strives to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic nearly three years after it began, human resource specialists and hospital leadership are seeing burnout or what many are calling quiet quitting among all levels of employees.
Quiet quitting refers to employees disengaging from work and no longer going above and beyond the minimum requirements for their job role. Employee disengagement is caused by several reasons, including:
- Low staffing levels
- Lack of support and resources
- Poor work-life balance
- Unrealistic work expectations
- Lack of career growth opportunities
In 2022, the Case Management Society of America and The Case Management Institute did a Salary and Trends Survey to take the pulse of the case manager community. The survey showed that most case managers were satisfied with their jobs, but several obstacles caused them to be frustrated and question their ability to meet the needs of their patients/members/injured workers. These issues include:
- Finding resources to meet their clients’ needs.
- Time to adequately perform their duties.
- Employers need to provide adequate support/resources for their teams to perform their duties.
- Lack of cooperation from the healthcare team.
- Patients/caregivers don’t value the role of the case manager.
The report showed that case managers reported finding resources to meet the needs of their clients as the #1 obstacle they currently face. This moved to the #1 position from the #2 position over the past two years. To retain staff, organizations need to work on resolving this challenge since it is an important factor in determining success or failure in meeting value-based care goals.
How widespread is quiet quitting the U.S. workforce?
Gallup projects at least half of the U.S. workforce is quietly quitting. The data reveals many employees — especially millennials and members of Generation Z — are less satisfied with and empowered by their workplaces.
Do these stats mean employers should expect rampant quiet quitting or that there’s no way to unwind it once it’s taken hold? No, but they will need to identify how it arises and know how to foster a culture that inspires every employee to find their purpose.
How can employers improve the workplace environment?
A report from Paycom explains that as quiet quitting appears in more headlines, employers might be tempted to strategize around eliminating it. This won’t work as quiet quitting is a side effect, not the primary issue. Those who see morale falling and staff lacking motivation try to focus on boosting employee engagement. Here are six strategies that might help:
- Evaluate or create an employee well-being program.
- Foster a psychologically safe work environment.
- Acknowledge every employee.
- Show appreciation.
- Invest in development.
- Review compensation.
What can employees do when they lose their passion for their work?
- Employees play a part in improving the workplace environment. They are responsible for their well-being and their performance. For those who feel like they are losing their passion for what they are doing, try these things:
- Look at where you are and decide if it is where you want to be.
- Set up a committee to discuss concerns.
- Meet with your leadership to address some of your concerns and offer suggestions on improving the workplace.
- Get involved in your professional organization. Doing so allows you to network with professionals in your field and discover what is happening in your practice area.
- Think about returning to school for an advanced degree, learning a new skill or opening your eyes to new opportunities.
- Look into counseling. Talking about your feelings and changes in your attitude can help you see things differently.
- Do more outside of work. Picking up a hobby that makes you happy can improve your outlook.
Healthcare professionals are uniquely positioned as there will always be work for them. Healthcare is 24/7. Reimaging your career and the work you do is something that you should frequently do. It will help you stay fresh, invigorated and give you your purpose.
2022 Case Management Salary and Trends Survey: https://website-cmi.s3.amazonaws.com/2022+Case+Management+Salary+and+Trends+Survey+copy-compressed.pdf
Stepping Up to Case Management Certification: https://anne-llewellyn.s3.amazonaws.com/2021+Stepping+Up+To+Certification+1209.pdf+final+version.pdf
Second Acts: Reflections from Nurses to Inspire the Next Generation https://anne-llewellyn.s3.amazonaws.com/2ND+ACTS+FINALVERSION.pdf+4.2.19.pdf
Nurses Moving Beyond the Bedside: There are No Limits: https://anne-llewellyn.s3.amazonaws.com/Nurses%2C+Moving+Beyond+the+Bedside.pdf
Quiet Quitting: Definition, Causes and Tips to Enhance Work Culture: https://www.paycom.com/resources/quiet-quitting-guide
Anne Llewellyn, MS, BHSA, RN, CCM, CRRN, CMGT-BC, BCPA, FCM, is a nurse advocate, mentor and educator. She writes and speaks on the importance of empowering patients and their families to be active members of their healthcare team. She also educates healthcare professionals to recognize the important role they play in the complex healthcare system.
Job searching or hiring? Access the CMSA Career Center, the industry’s premier electronic recruitment resource.
Image credit: ISTOCK.COM/SOLIDCOLOURS