How to Build a Better Medical Team: Blending Culture With Experience

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Hiring in the medical field often involves the challenge of finding a balance between medical and technical skills, as well as hospitality, friendliness and openness. Whether you’re in charge of hiring for a medical device company, hospital or general healthcare organization, it’s important to find employees who can not only hold their own in an information-rich industry but also stand out to clients and patients for their stellar work ethic.

We are often asked at the Nicholson Center how we hire employees at all levels that are perfect fits for our company culture, while simultaneously excelling at their jobs and welcoming guests for our many events. One of our secrets to success in finding these fits is in our hiring process. We constantly look for individuals with talent who not only fit the job requirements, but also have a passion for providing premium guest service while having personalities that fit into our ever-changing medical and technological atmosphere. Below are several of the key qualifications we recommend looking for in order to build the best team for your medical organization:

Ability to Adapt and Be Agile

As mentioned above, in the industry of medical training, both technology and procedures are constantly changing, and it’s important that our staff is open to change and simultaneously willing to adapt to it. We call it being “Agile” vs being “Flexible,” because flexibility is bending to fit a need, while agility is being more proactive to fit a need before there is one. To get a gauge for this in the interview process, it’s important to ask questions like “What was a new task you had to learn quickly for a previous position, and how did you approach the process?”, or “Are you a person that likes and adapts to change, or do you prefer for procedures and management to stay consistent?”

Culture Fit

Working in a healthcare or medical industry requires extensive knowledge of the field and the skills to back it up. However, don’t focus solely on the technical talents of a potential applicant, but also on whether or not they are a culture fit. Whether your organization is patient-facing or business-to-business (B2B), approachability and cooperation are key for keeping both sides happy. Ask yourself if you can see that person having the ability to intuitively work in collaboration with their fellow team members, and if you can see them positively representing the company. It is also important to know if this applicant shares the same vision and values of the organization so work efforts are not set in an opposing direction.

Authentic and Quality Service

You want team members that will make clients or patients stop to point out how great their service was. No matter what, your employees will have to go through some form of healthcare training prior to diving into the position, but there are certain character traits that cannot be taught. Make sure you are looking for employees who inherently possess the traits like compassion, empathy, kindness, listening, and then look for what they can learn from other various forms of training second.

Retaining the Right Employees

This is the most difficult but most important part of the process, but the first step is giving Trust to those you hire. Once you have your all-star team, keep retention in the back of your mind at all times. Are you doing everything you can to keep your employees happy and keeping productivity at its highest possible level?

Start by developing a career growth path for each of the employees within your organization and help them develop and progress in the company. Have them take a personality preference test like the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator ® to understand how your team processes information and how to have optimal communication with each individual team member. Make sure every member knows the importance of their position and truly understands the “why” behind their day-to-day tasks. Work with them to envision their future within the company and show them their work matters. Keep them motivated with positive affirmation and acknowledging the work being done. It's important for leaders to touch base with employees, similar to a nurse making his/her rounds to patients. Give them permission to make smart and thoughtful decisions. By empowering your team they will feel a higher sentiment to their work environment and will feel accountable to the success of their efforts.

You should also provide a constant metric of progress for your staff. Feedback doesn’t have to always be formal, but it should be consistent and often. Instead of formal yearly evaluations, hold shorter quarterly face-to-face meetings with your employees to discuss their work, praise their achievements, and also any challenges or areas where they may be struggling with. If they are facing multiple challenges, discuss supplementary training and mentoring to help keep them engaged and growing before leaning toward disciplinary actions. Even without facing challenges, you should provide opportunities for your employees to take classes or seminars that will help in their careers.

Have any other tips to add? We’d love to hear about them below and put them in a follow-up blog!

See us for yourself! Come visit our excellent team and learn more about our team training courses at the Nicholson Center. To schedule a tour, contact us today:


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