NURS-6053 Workplace Environment Assessment Paper
Workplace Environment Assessment
Like many other workplaces, healthcare organizations have employees diverse in races, genders, ages, and beliefs, among other factors. Such variations affect their everyday work and their relationship with colleagues and leaders. Leadership approaches and problem-solving strategies also determine the workplace climate. It can be civil or uncivil. To enhance productivity, a detailed diagnosis of the workplace environment is essential. Such a diagnosis assesses the civility level and causes of incivility. The results help nurse leaders and other involved stakeholders to implement appropriate interventions. The purpose of this paper is to describe my workplace environment assessment results, a concept related to the assessment, and appropriate strategies from literature for addressing shortcomings.
Workplace Environment Assessment Results
Clark Healthy Workplace Inventory is an effective tool for assessing the workplace climate as far as civility is concerned. The Clark Healthy Workplace Inventory scores revealed that my workplace is moderately healthy. Generally, most of the scores ranged between 3 and 4, giving a total of 87. Oppel et al. (2019) emphasized the need for teamwork and collaboration in the workplace as critical components of civility. However, several areas require massive improvement, with the increased level of confusion among workers regarding their expectations leading in the areas that need to be addressed. The confusion stems from poor and unclear communication from team leaders.
The workplace inventory results were characterized with surprises, albeit confirming some expectations. One of the surprises was somewhat strange results. For instance, the overall assessment outcome still displayed a score implying a moderately healthy working environment despite getting a score of 3 in employee engagement in decision making. I perceive my workplace to be mildly healthy. The other surprising outcome was that a score of 87 implies that only 3 points are missing to achieve a very healthy organization. Here, the implication is that the difference between uncivil and civil workplace is narrow and may confuse employees despite their working environment not being standard.
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I believed in various ideas before conducting the assessment, and one was confirmed. In agreement with Clark and Ritter (2018), transparent communication is critical to enhancing organizational performance besides employee engagement. Before conducting the assessment, I believed that implementing employee mentorship programs are crucial in promoting engagement and communication. The assessment confirmed this idea since engagement and communication were confirmed as vital tools for enhancing organizational performance.
Regarding what the assessment results suggest about the health of my workplace, a score of 87 indicates that the working environment is not civil. Although the scores show a moderately healthy environment, poor communication between supervisors and practitioners is prevalent. Communication problems reveal a relationship gap undermining civility in the organization. I have experienced several instances of communication breakdown, suggesting the need for addressing this area adequately. For instance, there was a time when our supervisor did not give comprehensive directions regarding how nurses should conduct ward rounds and who to cover specific shifts. The instance caused confusion and burnout, which is detrimental to patient care. Poor communication also causes discomfort and negative attitudes towards work.
Reviewing the Literature
Communication gaps, workplace incivility, and other issues detrimental to patient care have been explored from various dimensions in health care research. Clark (2019) primarily focuses on the attributes of civility in healthcare settings for nurses, and the roles leaders play in fostering civil behavior within the organization. The article illustrates the connection between effective leadership and a civil workplace. Clark (2019) demonstrates how the PEAK and self-reflection concept helps develop a healthy and civil working environment. The main idea behind the concept is individual assessment of strengths and weaknesses among nurses as the foundation of healthy attributes within the work environment.
Besides the PEAK and self-reflection concept, Clark (2019) suggests the need for servant leadership in promoting communication and engagement as critical tools for a civil working environment. From a practice viewpoint, servant leadership is characterized by sharing knowledge and power and commitment to creating environments that promote employee’s growth. Nurse leaders usually shelve their desires to better their followers (Maglione & Neville, 2021). It is among the dominant leadership styles for empowering nurses and improving communication.
Regarding the relationship between the concept presented in the article and my work environment assessment, the PEAK and self-reflection concept impacted the assessment outcomes. My organization has adopted the concept, and awareness of individual strengths and weaknesses leads to moderately healthy organizations (Clark, 2019). However, the organization has not fully implemented servant leadership despite its massive gains. Servant leadership prevents workplace bullying and reduces incivility and ostracism. Failure to adopt servant leadership is manifested by poor communication among nurses and supervisors. Poor communication also hampers cohesion and attitudes to routine practice.
The organization can benefit immensely by implementing servant leadership. Implementing it would build healthy and more robust teams to enhance productivity. Adopting servant leadership can help to promote good communication and a healthy relationship between nurse leaders and employees. Servant leadership’s central tenet is leaders and team members collaborating in decision making to promote a synergistic relationship across different levels instead of dictatorial rule. It focuses on employees’ empowerment by eliminating barriers that hamper healthy leaders-employees relationships. As a result, nurses can work together with their supervisors to select tasks, set goals, and make decisions (Oppel et al., 2019). Effective communication implies clear instructions, reducing conflicts in turn. It further increases focus, hence enhancing performance. Through servant leadership, nurses would be freer to discuss a particular task when assigned with their supervisors. Employees’ strengths and weaknesses would be assessed comprehensively to ensure that the assigned roles match an employee’s capabilities. Doing so would be integral in promoting safety and quality of care besides improving civility through better leader-employee relationships.
Evidence-Based Strategies to Create High-Performance Interprofessional Teams
Health care organizations apply different strategies to address workplace problems depending on the problems’ scope and type. They also excel in some areas where strategies’ improvement leads to better outcomes. A work assessment reveals gaps and successful practices. From the assessment, the main issue undermining performance and detrimental to workplace civility is poor communication. Therefore, interventions to address shortcomings should focus on communication. Regarding successful practices, collaboration and teamwork should be bolstered to create high-performance interprofessional teams.
Strategies to Address Shortcomings
Regardless of the size, mission, and type of an organization, leaders should create an environment of cohesiveness to succeed in their mandate. As aforementioned, servant leadership is an effective way of improving communication since it removes hierarchical barriers. However, healthy organizations cannot rely on a single approach to address communication problems. It should combine strategies and adopt a multifaceted approach.
One of the most effective ways of improving workplace communication is creating an open environment. As Kwame and Petrucka (2020) posited, employees should feel comfortable among their leaders and speak to them. Such comfort ensures that employees report a problem, ask questions, and seek support. Furthermore, leaders should make it clear to their team how and when they can reach them. Communication barriers that limit physical communication, such as distances, can be overcome by utilizing technologies such as videoconferencing. Opening up the flow of communication would be a suitable strategy for making employees to open up too.
Besides facilitating open communication, leaders should do away with one-way communication. Sibiya (2018) found one-way communication a significant barrier since it hampers the self-expression and dynamism needed when intercultural teams communicate. For a long-time, the organization has relied on the top-down approach. Despite being a classical approach, top-down communication cannot effectively work in today’s multicultural organizations. It is an outdated approach as organizations integrate technologies in communication. Accordingly, leaders should consider other approaches that encourage communication, such as a social media presence, interaction dashboards, and mobile apps. Employees should also be encouraged and supported to communicate anonymously to raise issues without limitations.
Strategies to Bolster Successful Practices
Teamwork and collaboration were evident during the work environment assessment and should be bolstered to achieve a more civil and healthy workplace. A suitable way of strengthening teamwork and collaboration is to create a supportive work environment. According to Maassen et al. (2021), a supportive work environment for healthcare providers should be safe, free from bullying, and promote inclusion. In such environments, diversity is embraced, and employees can share their ideas freely without being ridiculed. Each employee’s contributions are appreciated as leaders create avenues for interaction and healthy engagements.
Besides creating a supportive work environment, leaders can foster collaboration and teamwork by working with employees’ strengths. In this case, the organization should continue using the PEAK and self-reflection tool to understand employees’ strengths and weaknesses. Other tools such as personality tests can also be integrated into the assessment process to ensure that employees’ behavior traits are understood. Understanding employees’ behaviors and strengths enables leaders to assign them roles and group them according to abilities. It is a strategy of promoting specialization, improving productivity since employees work according to their strengths (Borkowski & Meese, 2021). Ability grouping also increases employees’ motivation to work and complete tasks quickly and conveniently.
Strategies focusing on employees’ empowerment effectively improve communication, collaboration, and teamwork. Besides, leaders should also adopt robust workplace policies and cultures to deal with discrimination and oppression, among other issues that hamper healthy relationships. A suitable example of such interventions is zero-tolerance policies to workplace incivility. Uncivil acts should be severely punished to discourage their perpetrators. Leaders should also promote a culture of reporting. According to Chakravorty (2019), half of the workplace incivility cases are unreported, making it difficult for leaders to address them effectively. A reporting culture is crucial to ensure that all issues are reported and managed appropriately.
Workplace incivility is among the issues in healthcare organizations detrimental to interprofessional collaboration and quality patient care. Accordingly, healthcare organizations should assess their civility levels to ensure employees work in healthy environments. Clark Healthy Workplace Inventory is an effective tool for giving insights regarding shortcomings and successful practices. My work environment assessment gave a score of 87, revealing a moderately healthy workplace. Poor communication between employees and supervisors is the main problem that should be addressed to promote civility.
Borkowski, N., & Meese, K. A. (2021). Organizational behavior, theory, and design in health care. Jones & Bartlett Learning.
Chakravorty, I. (2019). Incivility in healthcare. Sushruta Journal of Health Policy & Opinion, 12(1), 17-19. https://doi.org/10.38192/12.1.9
Clark, C. M. (2019). Fostering a culture of civility and respect in nursing. Journal of Nursing Regulation, 10(1), 44-52. https://doi.org/10.1016/S2155-8256(19)30082-1
Clark, C. M., & Ritter, K. (2018). Policy to foster civility and support a healthy academic work environment. Journal of Nursing Education, 57(6), 325-331. https://doi.org/10.3928/01484834-20180522-02
Kwame, A., & Petrucka, P. M. (2020). Communication in nurse-patient interaction in healthcare settings in sub-Saharan Africa: A scoping review. International Journal of Africa Nursing Sciences, 12, 100198. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijans.2020.100198
Maassen, S. M., van Oostveen, C., Vermeulen, H., & Weggelaar, A. M. (2021). Defining a positive work environment for hospital healthcare professionals: A Delphi study. Plos One, 16(2), e0247530. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0247530
Maglione, J. L., & Neville, K. (2021). Servant leadership and spirituality among undergraduate and graduate nursing students. Journal of Religion and Health, 60(6), 4435–4450. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10943-021-01311-9
Oppel, E. M., Mohr, D. C., & Benzer, J. K. (2019). Let’s be civil: Elaborating the link between civility climate and hospital performance. Health Care Management Review, 44(3), 196-205. https://doi.org/10.1097/HMR.0000000000000178.
Sibiya, M. N. (2018). Effective communication in nursing. Nursing, 19. https://doi.org/10.5772/intechopen.74995
Module 4: Communication and Relationship Building (Weeks 7-9)
Assignment: Workplace Environment Assessment. Due on 1/29/22
Clearly, diagnosis is a critical aspect of healthcare. However, the ultimate purpose of a diagnosis is the development and application of a series of treatments or protocols. Isolated recognition of a health issue does little to resolve it.
In this moduleâ€™s Discussion, you applied the Clark Healthy Workplace Inventory to diagnose potential problems with the civility of your organization. In this Portfolio Assignment, you will continue to analyze the results and apply published research to the development of a proposed treatment for any issues uncovered by the assessment.
â€¢ Review the Resources and examine the Clark Healthy Workplace Inventory, found on page 20 of Clark (2015).
â€¢ Review the Work Environment Assessment Template.
â€¢ Reflect on the output of your Discussion post regarding your evaluation of workplace civility and the feedback received from colleagues.
â€¢ Select and review one or more of the following articles found in the Resources:
o Clark, Olender, Cardoni, and Kenski (2011)
o Clark (2018)
o Clark (2015)
o Griffin and Clark (2014)
The Assignment (3-6 pages total):
Part 1: Work Environment Assessment (1-2 pages)
â€¢ Review the Work Environment Assessment Template you completed for this Moduleâ€™s Discussion.
â€¢ Describe the results of the Work Environment Assessment you completed on your workplace.
â€¢ Identify two things that surprised you about the results and one idea you believed prior to conducting the Assessment that was confirmed.
â€¢ Explain what the results of the Assessment suggest about the health and civility of your workplace.
Part 2: Reviewing the Literature (1-2 pages)
â€¢ Briefly describe the theory or concept presented in the article(s) you selected.
â€¢ Explain how the theory or concept presented in the article(s) relates to the results of your Work Environment Assessment.
â€¢ Explain how your organization could apply the theory highlighted in your selected article(s) to improve organizational health and/or create stronger work teams. Be specific and provide examples.
Part 3: Evidence-Based Strategies to Create High-Performance Interprofessional Teams (1â€“2 pages)
â€¢ Recommend at least two strategies, supported in the literature, that can be implemented to address any shortcomings revealed in your Work Environment Assessment.
â€¢ Recommend at least two strategies that can be implemented to bolster successful practices revealed in your Work Environment Assessment.