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What’s the Health of Your Workforce?

  • Jun 25, 2017
  • Meaghan Puglisi
  • 4-min Read

Lifespark Once Again Named a Top Workplace by Star Tribune

Joel Theisen, RN, CEO & Founder of Lifespark’s belief is clear: there’s more to care than just the medical and it’s all about the people.  That’s how he determines the health of his home care organization – what are we doing to spark lives and how can we help people spark them? “The business of whole person senior care is people-driven – it’s about the employees who care for our clients, it’s about the clients who want person-centric care, and it’s about building relationships with partners,” said Joel. “When all of those elements align, people feel good and engaged in their work and clients achieve proven outcomes.”

That philosophy of ‘it’s all about the people’ has earned Lifespark several workplace awards, and just recently a spot on Star Tribune’s prestigious ‘Top Workplace’ list for the 7th time. But the real test of the health of your workplace is in what the people say about their employee experience. Lifespark employees were quoted in the survey saying, ‘I am motivated to do my best and continue to learn and grow in my career. I am encouraged to provide excellent care and services to my clients,’ and ‘Our growth and direction in changing healthcare is what motivates me.’

According to Workplace Dynamics, the company responsible for conducting the workplace survey, the Top Workplace designation means ‘your organization is doing the right things to support a healthy workplace culture.’  Workplace Dynamics shared in their tips report that a recent study of 2,250 corporate recruiters reported that companies with a strong employer brand can reduce their cost-per-hire by as much as 50% and benefit from a significantly lower turnover rate too. Not to mention, Millennials will make up 75% of the workforce by 2025 and these candidates are driven by purpose, a sense of connection, and a healthy work/life balance—many of the same things required of Top Workplaces.

Purpose and connections to something meaningful are exactly why Lifespark employees not only stay with Lifespark but considered this more than just a job.  “We pride ourselves on our strong culture,” said Joel. “It’s more than ‘eating’ strategy, culture IS strategy. If our employees aren’t engaged or happy at work that is a disadvantage to the people we serve. Investing in our people is paramount to delivering quality care that sparks lives.”

Inspiring and motivating healthcare professionals in a time where caregiver shortages and burnout is prevalent can be challenging.  A recent article in HealthLeaders Media points to burnout in healthcare as a cause for concern. The article stated that ‘Burnout is not, as many believe, a failing of an individual. Rather, it’s a sign that something is amiss within an organization, and that systemic dysfunction can prevent an organization from achieving the desired outcomes of today’s value-based care efforts.’

“It’s true,” said Emily Timm, Director of Operations for Lifespark. “We have to be very careful how we utilize our team to keep them motivated. The goal is always small caseloads to create autonomy for our people but also build deeper, more meaningful relationships with our clients. That’s where we see the greatest success. At a leadership level, we work hard to be mindful of that work/life balance and to provide opportunities for growth and education. It’s important to us that our team is able to live and breathe our core values – to create a fun and ‘sparked’ work environment.”

The health of your workforce is an important indicator of client engagement and health outcomes – you can’t achieve one without the other. It’s important for healthcare organizations especially to review and realign strategy goals to make sure their culture remains strong and constantly reinvest in their people.

Joel added, ‘we are honored to receive culture awards like Top Workplace because it means we are on the road to doing the right things for our people. That’s not to say it’ eas because with fast growth comes workforce challenges and we do our best to stay ahead of those. But it also comes down to our people who move with these challenges, communicate their frustrations, and as a company, come together to solve these issues with open and transparent conversations. I am deeply proud to be among this group of purple sparkers. They have the passion and scrappiness to do amazing things for our senior population.’

What’s the health of your workforce? Share your tips on creating a strong workplace culture.




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