The Home Health Aide’s Guide to Effecting Change in the Workplace

Change is important to personal growth and development, organizational productivity, and is inevitable. If society has learned anything from the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, it’s that change happens, and we can weather the storm.

Why Is Change Difficult?

For many, the fear of change is linked to the uncertainty it brings into their life. According to Tim Ferriss, author of “The 4-Hour Workweek” and others, people would rather live unhappily than with uncertainty in their lives. Scientists believe your brain registers uncertainty like a mistake that must be corrected in order to regain homeostasis or comfort again. This is likely related to your innate ability to seek safety and security.

Change may also trigger a fear of losing whatever you associate with the change. For some, it may be the safety of their habits, and for others, it could be a job that may be eliminated. This fear of loss may even make all logical thought disappear. Researchers from the University of California San Diego believe this fear of loss is what triggers gamblers to bet on the long shot at the end of the day. They are more willing to make a bet they wouldn’t normally make when faced with the realization they’re losing.

Suggest Change Without Freaking People Out

Knowing you may freak people out when you suggest a change in the way things are done, here’s how to create an environment where change may be more readily accepted. Your employer must believe they have the ability to make the change, which can be affected by the way you frame the change you want to make. The more your suggestion sounds like something reasonable and doable, the better the chance it will be accepted.

This means before you suggest something, you develop a case, complete with sound reasoning and ideas of why the change is best for everyone. It may be difficult not to let your suggestion roll off your tongue the moment you think of it, but it’s best to stop yourself. Remember, most people are happy and comfortable in their routines. Your employer may not want to move their rugs, change their schedule, or limit visitors at home. To ensure your suggestions will be taken into consideration, you’ll need to make your case.

If you believe your suggestion may not be taken well, it’s time to get feedback from your trusted friends. It’s even better if you know someone who knows your employer and can offer an opinion of how it may be accepted. If your suggestion is for your employment agency and not your client, then it’s also helpful to talk with other home health aides who may be having some of the same concerns. It’s easier to brainstorm your case for change when more than one person affected by the change is involved.

Getting back to the fear of loss – think about how you can integrate an appeal to their fear of loss in your suggestion. For instance, your suggestion may reduce the company’s staff turnover or your client’s risk of falling. Each represents a loss to your employer. If your suggestion can reduce loss, your idea is more likely to be considered.

Remember, people could freak out over your suggestion, and it’s best to be prepared for this than be taken by surprise. Your best plan in this scenario is to give them time to digest your suggestion and the changes that may result. You know from your own experience, the longer you have to think about change, the more acceptable it becomes. Over time the “change” becomes familiar and no longer something to be feared. Step back and take a beat instead of jumping in with your explanations and justifications. You’ll likely find that your patience is persuasive.


Are You Looking for a New Job?

Our professional recruiters at Anodyne are ready and willing to help you find your next home healthcare assignment. Whether it’s your first assignment or your last, let our expert recruiters help make it your best! Call us today and find out how easy it is to work with experts.