Embracing Civility

The REAL Healthcare Reform!

Tag: Golden Rule (page 1 of 2)

How Will You Thank Your CNAs?

behind_nurse_running_cna_buttonHey Nurses!  Have you thanked your CNA today? 

National Nursing Assistants Week starts in 2 days!  Now is the time to shout out to the world just how much your CNAs mean to you!

Here are a few ways you can do it:

JFNA-logoCheck out what some celebrities have to say about nursing assistants!  Then leave
your comment to share in the shower of praise for your healthcare team’s
hardest working members!

newcover.inddAnd don’t forget, we’re giving away a free copy of our book when you
leave a comment HERE!
 Tell us how much you appreciate the
CNAs on your team!

12packHow about a gift to give your team?  Today only get a 12 PACK of our books
to give as gifts to your team.  Get them today only for a special, one-day-only, teeny-tiny price!  Hurry! This offer ends at midnight tonight!

Can You Spread This Germ?

You are contagious! Will you spread the happiness germ today! Here’s a little song to get you started. Go on, get up. Do your own happy dance. You don’t need a reason. Just do it. You’ll see!

Living with Integrity and Broken Tacos!


Family dinners with my kindergarten-aged twins are usually a raucous good time, and this week’s “Taco Tuesday” promised nothing less . . . until the taco shell broke.

Maybe I made the shells too crispy.  Maybe the meat was too moist.  Maybe Dylan was over-tired.  Maybe an offensive breeze knocked a kite out of the sky on Jupiter.

Whatever the reason . . . Dylan (the oldest by a minute) suffered a complete emotional breakdown at the sight of his exploded taco.  He bolted from the table and with the grace of a trained superhero, flew through the bedroom air and landed with a thud on his bed.  Face down. Sobbing. Convulsively.

“I don’t deserve to be in this family anymore!” He wailed.

“What the heck are you talking about?” I asked.

“I’ve been lying to you.” He confessed. Snot and tears soaked his pillow.

“I tell you every day that I was good in school and that I don’t get in trouble, but I dooooo. I get in trouble every single daaaaaaay.”

Hearing this confession simultaneously broke my heart and made me smile.  He just learned an important lesson about living with integrity.  And he learned it at age 5.  Wow!  I can’t help but be impressed.

Integrity can be a difficult concept to pin down, even for adults.  Most people think of it as honesty—or being able to tell the truth—but it’s even deeper than that.  Although Dylan’s confession was about telling us a series of lies, he could have gone on forever with the charade had it not been for his integrity.

Integrity is when your values match your behaviors.

Honesty must be a value my son just realized he holds.  And he realized that his behaviors did not match that value.  So the taco broke, the confession spilled and (after a long conversation about lying) his integrity was restored.

Fortunately, living with integrity doesn’t have to be so dramatic!  And you don’t have to wait until your taco breaks to figure it out!

Just think about the things that are important to you.  Family?  Career?  Reputation?  Self-respect?  Honesty?  Fairness?  Independence? And then think about all of the ways you behave (or want to behave) to reflect those values.

It’s not always easy to live with integrity. We all face distractions, conflicting desires and confusing motives. Dylan’s actions were motivated by his desire to use the computer. (Being “bad” in school usually leads to a loss of computer privileges in our house!)

What’s keeping you from living with integrity?

Does it really matter if you live with integrity? Why or why not?

What, if any, are the consequences of NOT living with integrity?

Do you think living with integrity is more important in healthcare professionals? Why or why not?

Let us know your thoughts! We love to hear from you!

What’s Your Fire Ant Personality?

I was ambushed by an angry mob of ferocious fire ants over the weekend. And, by “ambushed” I mean I suffered three tiny, but excruciating bites. And by “angry mob” I mean I stepped into their home and they failed to welcome me with tea and cookies!

As I scratched, iced and cortisone’d my assaulted ankles I decided I should probably do a Google search to see if I needed to worry about any other symptoms or complications. Turns out—no! I didn’t seem to be allergic and I didn’t suffer enough bites to warrant a trip to the ER! Phew!

Then I stumbled on a study published a few years ago that made me think a little differently about the angry beasts. It seems they have some pretty interesting and distinct personalities!

  • About one third of the colony will play dead during an attack (from a human foot or another colony of fire ants).
  • Another third will run away.
  • The final group will stay and fight to the death. (These are the chumps that got me!)

The first group is made up of the youngest ants. After an attack they can be found curled up just like a dead ant. Then moments later they uncurl and walk away.

Middle aged ants tend to flee, which scientist think may be a tactic to protect the queen.

The eldest ants are aggressive and attack furiously. One researcher points out, “All worker ants are females, and so it’s the cranky old ladies who are the ones fighting to the death.”

Looking at the structure of the fire ant colony reminded me a little bit of the social structures found in most healthcare workplaces. It resembles how different groups deal with the pervasive culture of incivility.

New graduates curl up and play dead when attacked. They may be unsure of how to respond or may fear the consequences that may come from defending themselves.

The more experienced workers tend to cope by ignoring the problem or retreating.

You can draw your own conclusions about the third group!

The interesting thing about the comparison though is that the fire ants act this way out of a primal instinct to protect their home and their family (aka colony) from danger. That makes sense. They are tiny little creatures trying to survive in a giant’s land. But, why do we do it?

Think about the fire ants the next time you are at work. Do you play dead, retreat or fight to the death? And, why? If you play dead, you’re giving the aggressor the confirmation he or she needs to feel powerful. If you ignore the problem or retreat, you may inadvertently perpetuate the problem by “protecting the queen.”

If you’re the one on the attack, think about what you are working so hard to defend. I can assure you, it’s not as important as your home or your entire family (like it is for the fire ants).


It’s Here! Civility Training for Your Organization!

It’s time to order your organization’s new Civility Training Program!  We are proud to offer the only healthcare-specific civility training program designed to meet the unique needs of the healthcare environment.

Based on our popular book, “The REAL Healthcare Reform,” this program is a complete turnkey solution that contains everything you need to get a civility training program up and running with minimal effort.

Training packages are available for as few as 12 learners and come complete with a copy of The REAL Healthcare Reform for each learner and an Instructor’s Manual for the educator.

The Instructor’s Manual is full of engaging classroom activities, thought-provoking discussion questions, convenient PowerPoint presentations, tips for improving participation and a CD with master copies of all the handouts and presentations. (Read a sample chapter!)

The best part is that the program materials are appropriate for every individual in your healthcare organization, clinical and non-clinical alike. Administrators, managers, nurses, aides, secretaries, and everyone in between, will find the program easy to use and understand. In addition, the program provides six hours of inservice credit for all Certified Nursing Assistants.

Healthcare organizations who provide civility training will find that it:

1. Meets Joint Commission’s recommendations.  This program meets the Joint Commission’s recommendation to provide training that reduces “behaviors that undermine a culture of safety,” particularly intimidating and disruptive behaviors among staff members.

2. Reduces costly medical errors. Incivility ruins communication among the healthcare team and poor communication is a direct threat to patient safety. Civility training decreases dangerous and potentially deadly medical errors by improving teamwork and communication.

3. Increases employee retention. A staggering number of healthcare employees report having quit a job because of incivility. Civility Training improves employee retention at every level, saving organizations the precious time and money involved in hiring and training new employees.

4. Cuts down on “call-outs” and absenteeism. Working in a culture of incivility leads to more absenteeism.  As many as 47% of healthcare employees report spending less time at work because of incivility. Civility training creates an atmosphere that energizes and inspires those who are in it. Employees who are energized and inspired will look forward to coming to work, thus reducing the rate of absenteeism.

5. Eliminates conflict and drama. Incivility leads to conflict and conflict = DRAMA! Healthcare professionals who embrace civility are less likely to burn out, bully or “eat their young!” This means less conflict and drama in the workplace!

6. Improves patient satisfaction and enhances the organizations reputation. Disgruntled, dissatisfied and disengaged employees don’t provide quality care to the patients they serve.  This leads to a decrease in patient satisfaction. Patients who are dissatisfied with the care they receive share their negative experience with others in the community.  Healthcare organizations that embrace civility enjoy improved patient satisfaction . . . and satisfied patients who speak well of the organization in the community enhance that organization’s reputation.

The benefits of using THIS Civility Training Program include:

1. The hard part is DONE!  Our Civility Training Program will save you time, effort and money.  You don’t have to create the program yourself.  We did that for you.  And you won’t have to hire an expensive “expert” trainer to come into your facility to deliver the training. The Instructor’s Guide will show you how to seamlessly deliver the content to healthcare professionals from a wide variety of backgrounds and settings with a wide range of learning styles.

2. Two simple products give you everything you need!  Our program consists of a workbook style booklet that goes hand-in-hand with the companion Instructor’s Manual. The Instructor’s Manual comes with a CD loaded with additional worksheets, quizzes and PowerPoint presentations. These two products contain everything you need to conduct your civility training.

3. It’s easy to customize the program to meet your specific needs! You can choose to arrange a full day “seminar” to cover all of the material in one day.  Or, you might like to break the content into chunks and deliver it over several shorter sessions.  This option is great for shift workers.  You can hold a morning session for one shift and an afternoon or evening session for other shifts.

4 There is a pricing option for every budget. When you are ready to order, call In the Know at (877) 809-5515 to choose the package that’s right for you. (See bulk discount pricing below.)

5. The program pays for itself. Incivility steals from your entire organization. Organizations like yours can end up paying dearly for incivility with their profit margins. In the Know’s Civility Training program will improve patient care, decrease costly medical errors and will inspire and energize your team. Best of all, it will decrease employee turnover at every level, saving you the time and money involved in hiring and training new employees.

To learn more about this new Civility Training Program, please call 877-809-5515. We are here to answer all of your questions!

Civility Training Program Package Options

Online ordering is currently not available for these packages,
so please call 877-809-5515 to place your order.

Number of Learners

Qty Discount Price Each Instructor’s Manual Your Cost
12 50% 9.97 69.99  $189.59
24 55% 8.97 69.95  $285.23
50 60% 7.98 34.98  $433.98
100 65% 6.98 34.98 $732.98
150 70% 5.98 Free $897.00
300 75% 4.98 Free $1,494.00


Are You Spreading Specific and Measurable Sunshine?

“A compliment is verbal sunshine” 

~ Robert Orben

Our sister blog, nurse-aide.com challenges us all to be more than just generous with our compliments. Linda Leekley, BS RN believes we need to make compliments really count by carefully crafting them to be specific and measurable! She writes:

Read the entire post here!

Now you try it! Set a goal for yourself to give at least one specific and measurable compliment to someone who deserves it every day! Check back and let us know how it works! We love to hear your success stories!

Nurse Managers: Ditch the Trinkets, Trophies and Doodads!

Looking for an innovative way to reward and inspire your team? It’s probably safe to assume they have enough pens, key chains, water bottles and canvas tote bags!

Before you order your next trinket or chachki, ask yourself if any of those giveaways ever really made a change. For example:

– Did your customized water bottles ever reduce costly medical errors?

– Did the pens and key chains increase employee retention?

– Did the canvas tote bags improve client satisfaction or enhance your organization’s reputation?

The Real Healthcare ReformChances are good that your answers are “No, no and no!” So, why keep doing it?

Instead of the typical gimmicks and giveaways, make your incentive dollars count!  Give a gift that shows just how much you value your employees, your clients and your organization.

Give the book, “The REAL Healthcare Reform: How Embracing Civility Can Beat Back Burnout and Revive Your Healthcare Career” as your next incentive gift!

By giving “The REAL Healthcare Reform” to your team, you will

    • Encourage civility,
    • Promote healthy teamwork,
    • Enhance your team’s communication,
    • Decrease your turnover rate,
    • Improve client care, and
    • Reduce costly medical errors.

That’s a valuable return you won’t get by giving t-shirts or tote bags!

With special bulk pricing in place, you can put of a copy of “The REAL Healthcare Reform” into the hands of every member of your organization for as little as $4.98 each. Here are your options:

of Books




























List Price:  Book / Instructor’s Manual
$19.95 ea. /  $125.00 ea.

Click here to learn more about
“The REAL Healthcare Reform” and read a sample chapter!


Taking a Closer Look at Civility

It’s day three of National “Win with Civility” Month…so it seems appropriate to look at three different definitions of civility. It’s a term that’s thrown around a lot these days, especially on this site! So what do we mean by our mantra of “embrace civility”?

If you check Webster’s dictionary, you’ll see civility defined as “courtesy; politeness; kind attention; good breeding; a polite act or expression.”  The synonyms listed include “formality” and “courtesy.” While we agree that politeness and courtesy serve as a good foundation for civility, for us, this definition doesn’t paint the entire picture.

How about Wikipedia? A bit of research unveiled their definition: “stated simply, people should always treat each other with consideration and respect.” Now we’re getting somewhere. While being polite—such as saying “please” and “thank you” to co-workers—adds to the civility of a workplace environment, its “beauty” is only skin deep. On the other hand, respect and consideration demand a deeper connection with the people around us. Respect requires us to observe the behavior of others and develop feelings of deep admiration for their abilities, qualities or achievements. And being considerate of our co-workers means we give careful thought and concern to our interactions with them.

For our third look at civility, we turn to the National Civility Center. They define civility as “a variation of the ‘Golden Rule.’ It is being kind, courteous, polite, and avoiding overt rudeness. In community improvement, it relates to higher-minded and self-sacrificing behavior. Civility is the ‘how’ when it comes to building relationships.”

We love that last line. We believe that civility is indeed the best way to build any relationship–whether it is with a family member, a friend, a patient or a co-worker. When civility is the “norm,” the atmosphere at work energizes and inspires those who are in it. Healthcare workers who embrace civility are less likely to quit or “job hop” and are less likely to burn out, bully or “eat their young!” Why? Because they are building relationships built on courtesy, respect, consideration and the Golden Rule. And that is a win-win situation for everyone—during “Win with Civility” Month and all year long!

Start Out Strong with the Power of Kindness and Giving

August is National Win with Civility Month! Here are some ideas (from the folks at helpothers.org) that you can use to start out strong and get your team thinking about the power of kindness and giving:

– Take flowers to work and share them with coworkers.

– Write a note to the boss of someone who has helped you, praising the employee.

– Leave enough money in the vending machine for the next person to get a free treat. (Tape the change and a note to the machine)

– Leave a cake or other food item in a central area anonymously with a Thank-You note.

– Email an article about an act of kindness to your group every week. (For examples, see www.helpothers.org)

– Give your manager or co-worker a thought-provoking book. (Hint: “The REAL Healthcare Reform: How Embracing Civility Can Beat Back Burnout and Revive Your Healthcare Career” is a great option for this one!)

– Print an inspiring story and put it on your work bulletin board.

– Commit “Random Acts of Thankfulness” with these “Thank You” cards.

– Buy a cup of coffee or snack for someone who is having a long day.

Have fun with this! It shouldn’t feel hard or forced. Just do what feels right and enjoy the collective, satisfied sigh of relief you hear from your team!

Leave us a comment about what you did and how it worked for you!

If there was a penalty for being rude . . .

incivility, civility, bullying, workplace bullying, change.orgHow would you feel if the government decided to regulate your attitude? If there was a penalty for being rude, unkind, short-tempered or mean, would you be guilty?

What if there was a monetary fine or even jail time for bullying? Would you quickly find yourself broke and/or behind bars?

– In Australia, one Union is pushing for mandatory jail time for workplace bullies.

– A bill in the Philippines, known as the “Anti Cyber Bullying Act of 2012″ seeks to penalize violators with a fine of 50,000 to 100,000 Philippine Pesos (that’s $1,100 to $2,300 USD) and imprisonment for six months to six years.

– Forty nine states in the US now have laws against bullying that allow victims to sue their employer for failing to prevent or punish workplace abusers.

– The Joint Commission has determined that “behaviors that undermine a culture of safety” are now considered a Sentinel Event and requires several new Leadership Standards, including requirements to provide education that focuses on civility and professionalism for all persons.

Look, no one likes to be TOLD what to do. And certainly, we don’t need to be nagged, reprimanded or reminded to “be nice.” And, while it may be difficult to admit that you have behaved in an uncivil way, most of us have been judgmental, jealous, rude or even short-tempered at one time or another.

Unfortunately, these behaviors are extremely contagious, and over time can infect an individual, a team, and an entire organization.

Today we face a worldwide, growing epidemic of incivility and SOMETHING HAS TO CHANGE!

Let’s not wait for our employers and our government to tell us how to behave. We can do this on our own. Each of us has the power to turn this problem around . . . and we can do it one person at a time. Let’s start a grassroots movement to restore civility to our workplaces, schools and public discourse, TODAY!

All you have to do is make a few basic changes in the way you interact with others. When you do this, your positive behaviors will go “viral!”

It works because just as rude and uncivil behaviors beget more rudeness and incivility, your kind, considerate and civil behaviors will bring about more kindness and civility!

Try it . . . you’ll see! Be sure to check back and let us know how it’s working for you!


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