I studied employee burnout and well-being as a young doctoral student working for an international development organization. My work involved supporting international healthcare and humanitarian aid workers, and I remember getting interested in how to support these professionals while they were working in challenging circumstances.
Things got real when a group of our employees was present during a café bombing in Uganda. While none of my colleagues were seriously injured, they were significantly impacted and needed the support of everyone back in the U.S. Our organization kicked things into high gear and worked to take care of the physical and emotional needs. Needs were identified and met. Fast.
That kind of institutional support is also critical for supporting the well-being of individuals working in healthcare. These past two years have become a sort of chronic emergency, which has left all of us depleted and more in need of community, connection, and support from our colleagues and organizations.
I hope that you take some time to think about your own needs for community and connection.
For Menders episode 24, I had the opportunity to chat with Jenn Cochran, a Nurse Coach and the founder of Happy Whole Nurse. Hearing Jenn Cochran’s story has been a timely reminder to me that slowing down can allow us to make powerful changes as we seek to care for ourselves and build the resilience and well-being of our teams.
Jenn shared some of the lessons she’s learned from her years as a nurse and how she’s grown past some of the less helpful elements of the self-sacrificing nursing culture as she’s learned to care for her whole self.
Jenn shares her transformation experience from that “angry at the system nurse” to a nurse who is refreshed daily and delighted to do her job. And she attributes this transformation to boundary setting. Jenn’s story illustrates the power that we have to create transformation, even when we are working in challenging conditions and imperfect organizations.
And she highlights the power leaders have to care for their employees simply by taking the time to honor and value themselves. We can all model self-honoring actions for those around us. Our patients. Our employees. Our families.
Listen to find out:
· How focusing on her self-care was initially received by her nursing colleagues.
· Why focusing on nurses’ well-being is beneficial for the bottom line of healthcare organizations.
· And the simple strategies leaders can use to demonstrate that they value their employees!
I hope this conversation inspires you to take the time to value yourself and to consider what values your behaviors are modeling for those you care about.
My favorite quotable moment from this episode!
“When you see your leadership valuing themselves, it does have that trickle-down effect [impacting] the way others will value themselves as well.”
Jenn Cochran (Menders, episode 24)
If you’re not already signed up, register for my free masterclass, How to Avoid the Top Three Mistakes Leaders Make When Managing a Team Struggling with Burnout, on September 21st at noon PST!
Want to connect?