By Jay Juffre

Not sure how many times it’s been said or reinforced, but the patient/client will never be happier than the person taking care of them. Principle being, if you want your patients to love you, make sure the team loves where they work and what they do. Patient care starts with staff engagement. Recently I attended a large conference. During one of the sessions, the audience was asked to take out their phones and answer questions from the moderator. Our answers appeared as a collective word cloud on the screen after each response. First question was, ‘what is the biggest thing that hinders employee morale?’ As the graphics appeared on the screen, the word ‘communication’ appeared the largest in the middle. Now, this was a group of top leaders from almost every industry, and collectively, they are identifying the obstacle preventing their people from happiness on the job. Immediate question comes to mind: if this is the top problem, what is the solution? Answer (and we all control it) is increased communication. Companies with the highest employee engagement, lowest turnover and therefore the happiest clients also are the best at communicating with their team. Dig in a little. You will find they are exceptional at ensuring their teams have all the information they need for success. Some examples include, pre-shift meetings, daily huddles, text chains, newsletters, ongoing training, consistent communication from top leadership, formal feedback systems, regular debriefs with their supervisor, and informal ‘how can we do better?’ meetings just to name a few. At the end of the day, when it comes to engagement, there are things we might not have much control over, like pay, commute, and some of the job requirements our employees may not love. However, the one thing we can always do better at to help the cause is increase communication. This is one example where the problem is also the solution.


Jay Juffre is Executive Vice President, ImageFIRST. For more information on ImageFIRST, call 1-800-932-7472 or visit