by John Minahan, CEO of Mindful Health Solutions
In the service business, our assets are our people. At the end of every day, our people leave the building or log off and return to their lives. After they leave, they make a conscious effort to return to work every single day. We, as a company, must ensure our employees choose Mindful Health Solutions every single day. And as CEO, it is my responsibility to prioritize the employee experience within the company.
The Common Employee Experience Problem
The first step in most hiring processes is to hire employees who fit the company culture. However, for an employee to succeed, they need to be trained. Unfortunately, newly hired employees are often thrown into a job with little to no training for the duties they are expected to perform. They are told to read up on the SOPs on the shared drive when they have a question. What does that even mean? SOPs and shared drives. That is not training. Soon, the company and the employee become frustrated. People leave, new people are hired, and the cycle continues.
As basic as it sounds, in large or growing service companies, this hiring cycle is what happens. While the CEO is focused on strategy, growth, and market position, he is not focused on the employee experience. And if he is not focused on employee experience, the rest of the company won’t be either. Sure, human resources will be, but both training and managing expectations daily require hard work and won’t happen by accident.
The Mindful Health Solutions Employee Experience
While understanding this common employee experience problem that other companies face, our goal is to train all our employees through a formal onboarding and training program. This program gives all our new employees the knowledge and tools to succeed. Also, we hold our managers accountable for constant and appropriate training at every level.
I don’t believe a company can grow without a strong focus on training. Luckily, we have the best HR executive in the industry, Debbi Miranda, MSOD, SPHR, so we can focus on training and improving our operational experience. We still have a few more initiatives to roll out, but over the next few months, we will have a very robust and well-defined training program for all our employees.
Fostering Motivation to Maintain Momentum
Every company needs momentum to grow. However, momentum, by its very definition, dies unless you continue to exert force. The force required for a company to maintain momentum is employee motivation. It is important that all employees must experience this motivation, not just some.
On my first day as CEO, I assembled a group of employees whose sole focus is to help improve the employee experience, enhance communication (both ways), and ensure we are fostering the motivation (and thus the momentum) needed for growth. We still meet every two weeks, and they teach me how to be a better CEO by understanding the employee perspective. I look forward to these meetings because we are all working to improve the company in fun and innovative ways. Through various initiatives and events, we work to foster connections among all employees.
Employees understand that these initiatives are coming straight from the CEO. My expectation is for employees to participate and have fun. Leading initiatives and events such as these show employees that I prioritize their experience. And when employees feel that they are being prioritized, they maintain motivation.
Keeping an Open Door
Finally, I feel it’s important that everyone in the company understands our plans and has a voice. To create this transparency and allow employees a chance to speak their minds, I hold “open Zoom” meetings where everyone has an opportunity to talk with me directly. In these meetings, anyone can join and speak with me about concerns or issues they might have. To be honest, I really enjoy my time at these meetings. It’s great to see how engaged people are, how concerned they are about patients, how they think about problems, and how they want to improve.
Overall, for our employees to have a great experience and want to continue working at Mindful Health Solutions, we must work hard to ensure we have an environment for success. However, a simple solution does not exist. As CEO, I must work to always listen and invest in our employees, and our executives, supervisors, and managers are all encouraged to do the same. For without our employees, our assets, we will never be able to achieve our mission of transforming suffering so every person can live a joyful life.