Continuous Feedback and Coaching: Are Annual Reviews Obsolete?
The healthcare workplace is rapidly changing and annual performance reviews are no longer considered an effective practice. By implementing continuous feedback and coaching, the pulse of employees and of the entire organization can be collected and evaluated in a more easy and timely manner. For example, healthcare workers are exposed to unique problems every day. Instituting a system of continuous feedback can help improve patient safety by increasing transparency, remediating future issues, and enabling managers to make more proactive and less reactive decisions.
One study finds that medical errors are the third leading cause of death in the U.S., following heart disease and cancer. Experts say if hospitals want to improve their safety records, leaders should make sure there’s a process in place for clinicians to freely report and discuss medical errors immediately after they occur. James Hoffman, an associate member of the St. Jude department of pharmaceutical sciences and the hospital’s Chief Patient Safety Officer, states, “Our results suggest that to increase voluntary reporting of all types of errors and patient safety events, regardless of the perceived severity, healthcare leaders should prioritize establishing feedback mechanisms that demonstrate to staff the value of information learned from the events reported.” Survey respondents also stated they were more likely to report if they believed the hospital would try to prevent future errors by improving processes as opposed to placing blame.
As you review your current performance review process, here are three reasons why a culture of continuous feedback and coaching may benefit your healthcare organization.
Improve Engagement & Satisfaction
Continuous feedback is a valuable system to keep employees motivated and engaged. “When employees can give as well as receive feedback with their management, it lets them feel more valued, less stressed out, and helps to build confidence as well,” Jayne Blake, Content Coordinator at Zintel, explains in a Hppy article.
The Gallup Daily tracking report shows that over 65 percent of the adult population is currently disengaged at work. Another study reveals that the most prevailing and consistent factor why people leave their jobs is dissatisfaction with management. Therefore, it’s critical for managers to connect with their teams on a consistent basis to ensure each employee is productive and engaged.
Identify Potential Problems
Healthcare is a fast-paced and accident-prone environment. Employees are often performing multiple jobs at once and don’t realize they’re doing things that can lead to harm. Chanel Sutherland, Marketing Content Specialist at eXplorance, a Learning Experience Management solutions provider, says, “Continuous feedback can help you identify problems before they affect performance.” You can discover potential ‘blind spots’ and proactively take actions to prevent them. It’s easier to correct potential issues before bad habits are formed.
Maintain a Positive Environment
As stated above, continuous feedback is a key factor in creating an engaging and enjoyable workplace. When employees feel heard and are comfortable giving and receiving feedback, their morale will improve, they’ll feel less stressed and will be able to better serve their community. They will feel good about coming to work everyday and will perform better, Sutherland says.
Is continual feedback or coaching part of your current performance management process? If so, what would you recommend to others looking to adopt this practice? Please share in the comments section below. We’d love to hear from you!