“Secret Angels” for Enhancing Staff Satisfaction and Peer Relationship

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Authors (including presenting author) :
Leung CYM(1), Szeto SM(1), Ng ML(1), Ng LKM(1)
Affiliation :
(1)Department of Surgery, Ruttonjee and Tang Shiu Kin Hospitals
Introduction :
Frontline staff in an acute ward are always working under time constraints and stress, enhancing staff engagement in workplace is important as it could create a healthier working atmosphere, increase staff productivity and lead to better staff retention.
Objectives :
(1) Nurses and clinical supporting staff gain opportunity to appreciate their colleagues, share their feelings and opinions; (2) Supporting staff feel to be recognized and engaged at work; (3) Improve supporting staff satisfaction and peer relationship.
Methodology :
The program “Secret Angels” was designed and implemented in an acute surgical ward form August 2018 to January 2019. The supporting staff including HCA/PCA was the target group. “Pre-program questionnaire”, “post-program questionnaire” and interview were employed. All frontline staff including nurses and supporting staff were invited to be the “Secret Angels”. They were randomly paired up with another staff, whom were their “Buddies”. “Secret Angels”, who remained anonymous to their “Buddies”, needed to commit 4 missions: (1) to understand their “Buddies” about their feelings at work and be their listeners; (2) to take care of their “Buddies” and offer help when they have difficulties; (3) to observe the strengths on work performance of their “Buddies”; (4) to write Thank You Cards to their “Buddies” anonymously to appreciate their work.
Result & Outcome :
All nurses and supporting staff in A8 Surgical Ward participated in the program. 100 % of supporting staff gained appreciation from their “Secret Angels”. 89% of supporting staff felt more to be recognized after the program; 67% of them agreed that the peer relationship was improved. During the interview, supporting staff expressed that the program provides a good platform to deliver their appreciation to their colleagues. All frontline staff showed enthusiasm about participating in the “Secret Angels” program. “Secret Angels” felt a responsibility for showing care and appreciation to their “Buddies”. On the other hand, “Buddies” felt more engaged and grateful after they gained recognition from their peers. The working atmosphere improved. It is believed that all staff would show more appreciation to each other in the future. Shortage of manpower and poor staff retention are always big challenges in health care field in Hong Kong, unsatisfying working atmosphere could be the root cause. Introduction of “Secret Angels” in ward can enhance staff engagement and improve peer relationship, patients are always benefited when the front line staff productivity raise.

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