Tips for Staff Engagement in Training
Clearly articulate the purpose and goals of the training initiative:
- What are the patient care priorities driving the education initiative?
- What are the desired clinical practice changes?
- Which education gaps need to be filled?
- Explain why specific training topics are encouraged by role.
- Tie the initiative to available data:
- Clinician-reported comfort level related to care of patients with serious illness
- Patient satisfaction or experience scores
- Clinical outcome measures
Use language that resonates with clinicians and aligns with their challenges, goals and practice styles. Topic- or solution-focused messaging (reducing suffering, goals of care, orientation) attracts engagement more than general messages. Emphasize:
- Continuing education credits and maintenance of certification points
- Job requirements, if applicable
- Consider making course completion a requirement
- Expected improvements in job satisfaction/competence
- Encourage personal skill building as an intrinsic motivation
Make it as easy as possible for staff to take the online courses:
- Provide pre-selected learning pathways with hyperlinks.
- Share instructions for creating user accounts, and CAPC contact info for questions regularly.
- If possible, create times during the work-day for staff to complete training.
Support and reinforce the training messages in group meetings and communications:
- Schedule a “Lunch & Learn” so staff can learn as a group and discuss their responses.
- Embed a case discussion based on the courses into standing team meetings.
- Include the training initiative and its progress in:
- Quality management progress reports
- Team meetings
Be transparent about progress, and recognize accomplishments:
- Share training completion reports.
- Create friendly competition with contests and prizes.
- Celebrate the completion of required coursework and/or CAPC Designations. Explicit recognition of training creates a culture a continuous learning and development.
- Create special recognition activities.
- Distribute personal letters from an executive.
- Keep training completions in personnel files.
- Put announcements in newsletters and public postings.
Engage champions within the team/organization:
- Identify the person/people whose goals will be furthered by the completion of the training, ideally with the authority to implement training innovation.
- Identify those in the organization who are passionate about improving patient quality of life, and who have formal or informal authority in the organization.