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REPORT: Supportive Leaders Linked to High Job Satisfaction for HHAs

January 21, 2016

Supportive work environments contribute significantly to the job satisfaction of home health aides, which in turn leads to financial benefits for home health agencies, a study published in the February Home Health Care Management & Practice shows.

Using survey data from more than 3,000 female home health aides, the researchers sought to determine the degree of correlation that exists between job satisfaction and various supports and stressors, both on the job and off.

Support from supervisors — in the form of clear communication, positive feedback, listening to concerns, and encouraging career advancement — were all strongly linked to high job satisfaction.

Additionally, the researchers found that aides were more likely to be satisfied with their jobs if they felt respected, challenged, and trusted.

“Supportive leadership can create significant financial benefits for health care organizations by reducing costs spent on” recruitment and retention, the report says.

Support for Coaching Approach

“The findings from this study reinforce the importance of PHI’s quality-jobs initiatives, such as the PHI Coaching Approach®,” said Susan Misiorski, PHI National Director of Coaching & Consulting Services.

“The PHI Coaching Approach focuses specifically on building supportive and respectful work environments by strengthening leadership and supervisory skills as well as the communication skills of staff throughout a long-term care organization,” Misiorski continued.

Higher wages and better benefits likewise translated to higher job satisfaction, as did more robust and complete training curricula, the report shows.

Causes of Stress

Meanwhile, the report shows that stressful family situations and burdensome child-care requirements tend to translate to on-the-job stress.

Tense relationships with co-workers and consumers also lowered aides’ job satisfaction, as did receiving incorrect information about consumers.

Conclusions

The researchers conclude that supervisors should work toward embracing home health aides as valued members of their agencies.

“Recognition of the ideas of home health aides as a direct-care workforce is essential for making organizations healthy through building trust, respect, providing challenging work, and encouraging confidence,” the report says.

— by Matthew Ozga

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