Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Nice Works for Safety

Being Nice in the Hospital

As I walked through the hall of a hospital I needed to remind myself that it was, in fact a hospital.  Each employee smiled and held the door.  In this very busy hospital with crowded hallways, I had to remind myself that this was not a hotel.  The volunteers were friendly and courteous.  The cleaning crew smiled as they walked passed me and no matter where I was, someone always seemed to want to know if I needed help finding something.
I watched as an employee escorted a woman off the elevator and brought her to the cafeteria following a brief interaction on the elevator.
In most cases I would say that “nice” doesn’t make an organization competent.  But, in some cases, being nice in a hospital setting can relax the patients and their family, it can help patients be more honest about their illnesses and problems allowing for more accurate record keeping, and it of course, makes patients want to come back.
No, being nice is not a sign of competency but when it is across the board, being nice obviously is coming from the top.

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