Give them a warm welcome with perhaps additional training in violence prevention. Discuss the grey areas with new staff so they feel empowered to know what to do in most situations. Support employees when allegations are made unless absolutely positive that the allegations made are true. Ensure adequate staffing levels so that staff are not needing to work for ex. 16 hr shift or work too much overtime. Ensure workplace gossip is dealt with as it can become toxic and employees may not feel comfortable coming in unless there is support available immediately after they have tried to resolve the situation first themselves by addressing the individual directly that is the source of the gossip or malicious behaviour. Let staff know when they are doing a good job. Appreciate your staff and if possible implement a policy similar to MB Hydro and other organizations where every second Monday is a day off paid so employees have the time they need to attend appointments and run errands while most places are open for business. Follow up with employees after any serious incident including if a staff has been injured to ensure the employee is alright, has filled out a Workers Compensation form if necessary and debrief alone with this staff and encourage team members to do the same with their coworkers. Send out an email welcoming each new employee and not just upper management and give a brief synopsis of their experience and educational history so the staff feel respected as a vital part of the organization as well as higher level staff since the work could not be done without your frontline workers. Have On Call staff come in to support in person when absolutely necessary so staff become aware that they are not alone and they have back up to help out in circumstances that absolutely require the additional presence of another staff member or could use a more senior staff present (especially if staff are new and alone at night) during difficult situations. If staff are at the hospital with a youth ensure there is always someone to relieve this staff after their 8 hour shift is complete if they are still at the hospital because many staff have children they must care for after work or take to school and many staff have second jobs and cannot be late for work on a regular basis. Implement disciplinary action for staff who do not show up for their shifts and do not call anyone to let them know they are not coming in after giving them the chance to correct this behaviour so then staff are not stuck at a unit or home unable to leave when people do not show up or come in very late.
Stop favouritism and be consistent with everyone. Take employee morale seriously. Recognize that your front-line staff are the key to success of the agency and start treating them with respect.
Answered - Youth Care Practitioner (Former Employee) - Winnipeg, MB