Oh No...Not More of That Fluffy Stuff! The Power of Engagement

By: Rich Bluni, R.N.

Something fluffy this way comes. And—good news—it just might save your organization.

Peace. Love. Forgiveness. Gratitude. To many leaders these words might as well read puffy clouds, candy hearts, teddy bears, and frolicking kittens.

Yet, what the cynical among us might call "fluffy stuff" is actually quite powerful. In fact, it's the very fabric of employee engagement. That's important because a) engagement is in very short supply, and b) it's deeply linked to outcomes. In healthcare, engaged employees provide excellent care, drive dramatic change, and keep organizations alive so they serve patients another day.

Besides, what's the alternative? As author Rich Bluni puts it, "So you're saying your team feels burnt out, unproductive, stuck in a rut like they've lost hope...but you're going to revive their spirit by making sure they understand the latest financial numbers and maybe send them to a seminar on how to interpret the latest healthcare law, and somehow THAT is going to fill their spirit?"

Oh No...Not More of That Fluffy Stuff!: The Power of Engagement is a funny, heartfelt, and inspiring look at what it takes to overcome huge obstacles and tap into the passion that fuels our best work. A follow-up to Bluni's wildly popular Inspired Nurse, it's filled with aha moments and practical exercises that help readers become happier, more excited, and more connected to the meaning in their daily lives.

Here are just a few of Bluni's insights:

  • Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. It's necessary for handing out compliments, saying thank you, and telling coworkers that you—gasp, choke, cringe—love them.
  • Learn the distinction between forgiving and forgetting. (When your roommate sells your jewelry to feed his addiction to Elvis memorabilia, forgive him but don't leave your pin number in the pocket of his new sequined white jumpsuit!)
  • Think of your FEARS in a new way: Finally Energizing A Real Solution. When you stop worrying about the what-ifs, you can finally take action toward a more successful work life.
  • Feeling overwhelmed? Stop playing "defense" and start playing "offense": Facing issues head-on keeps Monday annoyances from becoming Thursday catastrophes.
  • Don't try to go it alone. For every pioneer who built their "Little House on the Prairie," ten others were eaten by bears.
  • No matter how often you kiss that frog, it won't turn into a prince. Instead, perform a frog exorcism. (Translation: Stop owning the unhappiness of others.)

The challenges we face in healthcare are tough—heck, working with sick and maybe dying people is tough even in the best of circumstances—and it's not likely to get easier. This is true for leaders, frontline staff, all of us. Yet when we're willing to, as Bluni phrases it, "harass our spirits," we hone the inner resources we need to face whatever life sends our way with courage and commitment.

Oh No...Not More of That Fluffy Stuff! The Power of Engagement
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