How healthcare leaders can keep their teams during the 'Great Resignation' 

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The "Great Resignation" continues on, with the latest figures showing that a record number of 4.4 million workers quit their jobs in September. This has hit the healthcare industry hard, with about 1 in 5 workers leaving the sector since the beginning of the pandemic. Holding onto and recruiting talent is increasingly important to healthcare leaders. Becker's spoke to a human capital expert to reveal how healthcare leaders can retain staff. 

Addam Marcotte is a principal at FMG Leading, where he specializes in helping healthcare companies and services manage their human capital. He told Becker's about some of the pitfalls leaders can fall into in an attempt to retain staff.

"I would say the Great Resignation is really a wake up call. Healthcare organizations just can't achieve their missional growth goals without their people. What we've seen working with our clients on the front line in healthcare, where you might be working an hourly wage or shift work, is that you can go do that anywhere, and they are," he said.

As the labor shortage crisis has shown, there are myriad reasons employees quit, and thus there should also be a diversity of incentives to bring them back. 

"It's very commonplace for executive leaders to immediately go to a financial solution. But those [problems] aren't necessarily solved by a retention bonus or a slight pay increase," he said.

Instead, Mr. Marcotte recommends that leaders reevaluate the company culture instead of jumping to short-term fixes. 

"You have to become a great place to work before expecting to recruit and retain great people," he said.

Workers are looking for a variety of elements in employers, like good leadership, development opportunities, and company vision and purpose, he told Becker's. 

"Some people are looking for more autonomy or looking for increased responsibilities. Others are looking for continuing education opportunities; they want to master their craft and their skills," he said. Companies should then bear in mind these elements and what motivates their employees when building company culture and career paths.

Career development opportunities and pathways are also important to keeping employees. 

"Create a visible and known road map that says, work with us, build and develop your career. This is a place where you can grow your skills and grow your leadership. That's gonna be more attractive to a lot of these front-line workers than, you know, a slight increase in pay," Mr. Marcotte said. 

"One thing the pandemic taught us is that you can't wait for a global crisis to try and create a healthy culture. Paying attention to and prioritizing talent needs to be baked into the DNA and ethos of an organization," Mr. Marcotte said.

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