This week is National Nurses Week! And to celebrate the 63% of nurses who work in a hospital setting, WorkStride has taken the initiative to help improve the social culture of hospitals and healthcare facilities. Our employee recognition program was built and designed to enhance the employee experience of nurses and medical staff.
In an effort to continue that focus on improving the employee experience of nurses, we have come up with 20 ways to celebrate National Nurses Week!
20 Ways to Celebrate Nurses Week
1. Thank You Bags
Hand out small gift bags to your nursing staff. Include a card, a small knick-knack, and maybe even a gift card. This is a good way to show a general sense of appreciation to your entire staff.
2. Highlight a Nurse
Each day, choose a nurse (or one from each area of the hospital) to highlight. Tell their story and accomplishments. Not only will this give the highlighted nurse the joy of being recognized publicly, but it could also inspire other staff.
3. Do a Raffle
A raffle spices the festivities up by incorporating a game of chance. With appropriate and engaging rewards, your nurses and other staff will look forward to their chance to win. Simple awards like gift cards or parking spots are easy to manage across thousands of employees, while larger rewards such as experiences or high demand merchandise will get plenty of attention. Look at what fits your budget and compare it to what engages your employees.
Everyone loves a free t-shirt! Likely there are individuals on your staff who are artsy in their spare time. Hold a contest a month or so before National Nurses Week to create the best t-shirt design. Winner gets their design selected and a prize!
5. Catered Lunch
People love free food, and your nurses are no different. If you can find a balance between food people love and healthier options, you will be golden.
6. Giveaways to Boost Morale
Nurse-themed necklaces and pins are easy to get in bulk. Better yet, have your patients (especially children!) create pins for their nurses using paper and crayons. Glue a pin on them, and you have meaningful tokens for your nurses.
7. Boost Social Recognition
Encourage sharing appreciation through social recognition. While recognition should be incorporated all throughout the year, National Nurses Week is a great time to liven up the initiative. Post flyers around appropriate spaces to remind employees to recognize 5 coworkers this week!
8. Priority Parking
Executive staff and higher-ups tend to get the better parking spots, right? Well, what if for this week, those coveted spots are opened up to nurses? It might not seem like much, but it goes a long way!
9. National Nurses Week Decorations
Decorate appropriate areas with themed flyers and decorations to remind both staff and patients to appreciate their nurses. You might even be able to get the help of patient’s artwork to make it a fun and engaging area.
10. Host Nurses Meetups
Host hobby and interest group meetups at nearby hotspots. Nurses who share similar interests can get together and make friends across departments.
11. Host a Charity Event
Choose a charity that is relevant to you as an organization, or to nurses as a whole. Some examples are the American Nurses Foundation, the Lupus Research Alliance, or Nurses House. Take the time to do some research and plan your event to maximize participation. Maybe even create a reward to the nurse who gets the most support.
12. Patient Feedback
If your online employee recognition program allows for patient feedback, take the time this week to encourage patients to send a message of appreciation to their nurses and medical team during their stay.
13. Spot Recognition
Take a few gift cards or recognition certificates while walking around the facility. When you see someone do something helpful, impressive, caring, or live up to what it means to be a good nurse, give them something to say, “Good job.” These unexpected ‘thank-yous’ could make someone’s day.
14. Gym Memberships
Work with your local gym services to provide discounted memberships to nurses. This will help them keep up with their healthy lifestyles.
15. Healthy Snack Options
Stock the break room with fresh fruit and healthy food choices. If you normally have only unhealthy options (or worse: nothing), consider creating a healthy snack option for your nurses and other medical staff.
16. Offer Free Shoe Inserts
This one might sound weird at first, but since nurses are constantly on their feet, inserts could make or break their day.
17. Patient Envelopes
If your patients don’t have access to the internet (or are young children), have them write up a message or draw pictures for their nursing team. Put the paper in an envelope and hand out the envelopes at the end of the week.
18. Picture Wall
If you are allowed and/or given permission, take a photo of happy patients with their nurses and make a wall of photos. Keep the wall of photos up for a while so nurses, staff, and others can see the happy faces of nurses and patients.
Massages are the perfect way to relieve stress. A quick 20-minute massage during a break or before or after a shift can help improve posture, stress levels, and soreness from walking around all day.
20. Reward Engaged Nurses
At the end of the week, take a look at your recognition program and see who sent and who received the most recognition messages. Give out rewards to your most engaged employees to encourage year-long recognition and healthy company culture practices!
Appreciating nurses and other hospital staff does not need to be restricted to National Nurses Week. WorkStride has been helping hospitals and other workplace institutions increase their employee engagement levels and customer satisfaction levels through an online employee recognition program. In fact, they helped Cleveland Clinic (51,000+ employees) increase their employee engagement ratings by 40%!