Gosh – How Many Lessons From This?

Hospital staff unimpressed with pressie

Waitemata Health gives staff departmental phone list for Christmas for key ring; one nurse says it was worse than getting nothing 14 December 2009

Staff at the country’s worst performing hospital for waiting times have been given the bureaucratic equivalent of a lump of coal for Christmas.

In their pigeonholes they have found a “small token” of Waitemata Health’s appreciation in the form of a handy departmental phone list, with all the hospital’s vital extension numbers listed in a plastic cover with a tag. Some staff report the tag falls apart when an attempt is made to put it onto a key ring.

The apologetic note attached to the gift says sorry it cannot be anything bigger. One nurse says it was worse than getting nothing.

10 Lessons

1. Know your staff.

2. Sometimes doing nothing is better than doing something (especially if it is bad).

3. Always ask, “What will be the effects of this?”

4. How to anchor a bad memory rather than a good memory.

5. Does this demonstrate appreciation?

6. The intention for giving this gift is misaligned with how it was received.

7. One size present does not fit all.

8.  Its not about the money – spending more on a present could have got just as bad a reaction.

9. Something that breaks the first time is usually not received terribly well.

10 Know your staff  – again, just in case you missed it as number one.

McWilliams Consulting