Putting People First

In its December 2021 update of the strategic plan, the Board of Directors established as a top priority improving the experience of staff. Several factors influenced this decision, such as the pandemic's negative impacts on staff and chronic labour shortages across all healthcare sectors.

To act on this priority, Perley Health began to implement a series of initiatives collectively known as People First. These include everything from additional support for staff appreciation and wellness to the establishment of a Cultural Awareness and Inclusion Committee. Perley Health has also adopted a new approach to leader rounding: managers and supervisors are encouraged to speak directly and regularly with staff about topics not necessarily related to employee performance. The goals of these conversations, now known as Connecting Sessions, are to: strengthen rapport; collectively identify and address potential and emerging issues; and create an environment where staff feel safe to speak about topics that matter to them.

Perley Health also established several new full-time positions, including a foot-care RPN, a wound-care Registered Practical RPN, and additional PSW personal support worker for each unit during day and evening shifts. The What a Difference a Day Makes campaign, described elsewhere in this report, also contributes to People First. The campaign led to dozens of new hires, for instance, and the testimonial videos posted online help to remind employees of the meaningful impact their work has on the day-to-day lives of residents, tenants and families.

“The health and well-being of staff directly impacts the quality of resident care,” says Rachel de Kemp, Director of Nursing. “The new hires and the People First initiatives, will inspire much-needed cultural change and help to ease the burden of our day-to-day work.”

And the difference is you! Managers of Resident Care (L to R), Kerry Tubman, Stephanie Kim, Samantha Diceman attend a staff appreciation event.

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