DiversityNursing Blog

Good Retention Requires Strong DEI Culture

Posted by Erica Bettencourt

Mon, Dec 13, 2021 @ 11:25 AM

GettyImages-1293236750Creating a workplace with a strong Diverse, Equitable and Inclusive culture is not only the right thing, it’s also crucial for your retention and improving patient care.

A study from Press Ganey shows health systems with strong Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) values have less risk of staff potentially leaving the organization.

The study also found:

  • Healthcare organizations had twice as many employees at risk of leaving if the workforce perceived diversity and equity weren’t prioritized versus work forces that do.  
  • The risk of leaving within 3 years is more than 4 times higher for healthcare workers who believe their organization doesn’t value employees from different backgrounds versus workers who do.  
  • If offered another job, healthcare workers are 4 ½ times more likely to leave an organization if they believe different backgrounds aren’t valued, or if the organization isn’t committed to workforce diversity, versus workers who do.   
  • Perceptions of diversity & equity are a bigger indicator of intent to stay with an organization among security personnel, nurses and physicians than other ancillary staff. 

Having a strong DEI culture allows employees to be comfortable and confident in who they are. This allows them to focus on providing the best patient care possible.

Research shows, 77% of employees and 80% of leaders who are disabled chose not to share their disability in their workplace. For LGBTQ workers, 46% are closeted at their place of work. And across all diverse characteristics, 75% of employees feel the need to mask their differences or downplay them during work.

Employees masking or hiding aspects of themselves during shifts affects their confidence, motivation, feelings of safety and hinders their job performance.

It’s important for healthcare workers to have mentors they can look up to throughout their careers. A lack of diversity can make it difficult for minority healthcare workers to find role models they identify with. This can impact their professional growth and their ability to provide optimal patient care.

A strong DEI culture isn’t something that can be achieved overnight. It requires a leadership who is dedicated to promoting cultural awareness and inclusion. It requires staff who are willing to take the time to learn about and understand each other. It also means being willing to identify and address biases.

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Topics: diversity, retention, nurse retention, diversity inclusion and belonging, diversity and inclusion in the workplace, DEI, workplace culture, hospital retention rates, diversity equity inclusion

Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging

Posted by Erica Bettencourt

Mon, Sep 21, 2020 @ 03:47 PM

belonging

Our healthcare system must work hard to increase diversity within their workforce and create an inclusive environment. Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) strategies are necessary for health systems to provide the best care possible to an evolving population.

A sense of Belonging is equally as important. Just because an employee is working in an organization, it doesn't necessarily mean they feel they belong there.

The feeling of belonging is a fundamental human need. It is an extremely powerful force. Without it, your D&I strategy could fail.

The term Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging (DI&B) was created by Pat Wadors. She said, "D&I may capture your head, but belonging captures your heart.”

“When someone is different and insecure and they get to be authentic and are welcomed in a team, we can unlock their super powers and bring out the best—not only in that person, but the team and, therefore, the product, the service, the company, the world,” says Wadors.

Covering or masking is when someone tries to fit in with the dominant culture and downplay who they really are. Research from a Deloitte study of more than 3,000 people found that 61% of people cover at work, even more so if they are Black (79%) or LGBTQ+ (83%).

Neuroscience researchers have found that exclusion lights up the same regions of the brain as physical pain. “Being excluded is painful because it threatens fundamental human needs, such as belonging and self-esteem,” says Dr. Kipling Williams of Purdue University.

When someone feels excluded over a long period of time, and every day they have to return to an environment where they feel like they do not belong, they'll end up leaving.

Dr. Christine Cox of New York University’s Langone School of Medicine has identified six areas that are enhanced by inclusion and worsened by exclusion: intelligent thought and reasoning, self-care and self-improvement, prosocial behavior, self-regulation, a sense of purpose, and well-being. Each of these items represents real financial gains or losses for teams and organizations.

According to Wadors, in order to create a culture of belonging, teams and managers should reflect on three questions:

  1. How does your organization celebrate differences?
  2. As an employee, do you feel safe if you make a mistake?
  3. Does someone at work care about you?

A Forbes article mentions, another way that a sense of belonging can be nurtured is by creating a stronger sense of community.  A sense of community can be nurtured by regular interactions and collaboration. We tend to stereotype people less and are less fearful of difference when we are more familiar with them or spend more time with them.

But most importantly, there must be trust. Employees should have trust in the company's mission, in the leadership's vision and in their goals. Once every employee feels that they belong in the organization, this will lead to a more positive and inclusive workplace.

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Topics: Diversity and Inclusion, diversity in healthcare, diversity inclusion and belonging

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