What’s Your Workplace MO?

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Improving nurse and certified nurse assistant interactions

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Megan Guido:
Welcome everybody, this is Megan Guido with What's Your M.O. in Healthcare? And today I have a very special guest, Amber Roberts, who is a certified color code trainer. She and I have worked together for over a year now teaching color-code and I'm thrilled to have her on the program as a fairly new color code trainer. She is a red-yellow and I love to have red-yellows on my show because those are the colors that I am the least of and I think we make a great compliment as a team.

Amber Roberts:
Hi, glad to be here. Thank you.

Megan Guido:
Amber, you are a nurse. And then tell me what your capacity is as a nurse and what you're currently doing.

Amber Roberts: 
I've been a nurse for 22 years years. And for 17 of those years, I worked as an obstetrical nurse, and so labor and delivery, postpartum nursery. And for the following seven years I was an assistant nurse director. And then since 2015, so the last four years, I have been a nurse educator but that includes education for everybody that works in a hospital, not just nurses.

Megan Guido:
Great so you made a bit of a career change there. So Amber, can you tell us a time at work where you had a strong reaction as a red personality, and that interaction didn't go well, in hindsight now that you know the color code skills, you could have handled that interaction differently?

Amber Roberts:
Yes, absolutely. I was actually a working manager and we had a delivery and we had a situation where a baby was not doing well, didn't have a heartbeat, wasn't breathing. And I had all my equipment out and this and that and I went to grab a piece of equipment that's always there and it wasn't there. And long story short, it's because the baby area didn't get stocked by somebody else. And when we were doing the delivery, I said, "Please go check, make sure everything's set up and we'll be ready to go. I'm expecting a shoulder dystocia so this might not be a good baby." And so I trusted that they did all of that, well long story short when it was time to get the baby back to this world I didn't have the necessary equipment. The baby did live and did great and was fine and wonderful.

Amber Roberts:
But how I handled it later, about an hour later, was asking that CNA (certified nurse assistant) what they were thinking, and the person happened to be pregnant, the girl, and I said, "What if that was your baby in there? Would you have wanted me to have the equipment or not to save your child?" Which was very, very direct and unnecessary really. And so I was under stress. I felt I delegated, which is typical behavior of a red under stress, And then I let them know how I felt exactly after which they didn't ask me for the feedback. I just offered it.

Megan Guido:
So looking back on that now that you know what you know about yourself and what some of the other strengths are from the other colors, how do you think you might have had that conversation?

Amber Roberts:
I definitely think I needed to retract myself out of the moment for a day or two and really think about what happened. I mean, we had a good outcome. I didn't need to go rant right away, nothing was going to get solved. And really grabbed from some of my blue strengths which would have been to process and then have a conversation calmly and be like, "I have a problem and I need your help, how can we make sure that this doesn't happen again? Because in our delivery the other day I didn't have," I can't remember what it was the ET tube or something. And just process it together instead of it being an accusatory thing because I could have easily double-checked it earlier, but I didn't. I delegated it during a stressful time and so there were things that we both obviously needed to do. It wasn't just a one-person show. So definitely grab from another color.

Megan Guido:
And reds have a tendency to be pretty reactionary and even being able to say what emotions you were feeling at that time could be pretty impactful to a blue to appeal to them because they understand feelings.

I think everybody has those episodes at work and not just in healthcare that you could look back and say, "Wow, now that I have these tools, how could I have managed that differently or had a conversation?" But what's so neat to see is that because you do have that awareness now of yourself, you can look back and say, "I probably should have taken a day to process this and think it and also learn, as a manager, what we could do to avoid that situation." So those are really great examples of how powerful color code can be.

Amber Roberts:
Not only in your work life but your personal life.

Megan Guido:
Amber, thank you for taking the time to talk to me and to be part of my new podcast and enjoy working with you as a new trainer and I appreciate who you are.

Amber Roberts:
Thank you.

 

Managing a martyr at work

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Megan Guido:                   Hi, it's Megan Guido with, What's your M.O. in Healthcare? If you've ever been called overly sensitive, it's likely you're a blue personality. I should know, I'm a strong blue, and throughout my life I've always been called overly sensitive. Of course, I don't like that because I'm sensitive and I don't like being called that. Being sensitive isn't necessarily a bad thing though, particularly in healthcare. We want sensitivity, we want compassionate healthcare providers who are empathetic, who listen and believe in the work that they're doing. That's what everybody wants.

Megan Guido:                   But in healthcare, I mean, let's face it, it can be pretty stressful taking care of people, and if you're overworked or under a lot of stress, it can come out. The limitations of a blue can really come out. So, a possible example is an overworked, stressed-out blue nurse seeing way too many patients, and maybe they're understaffed. That person may come across overly critical or judgmental of their patients or their coworkers. Rather than being empathetic and understanding, they're passing judgment. They may come across as self-righteous and even come across as a bit of a martyr, "No one works as hard as I do, the hours I'm putting in. This nurse is not helping me out. Those CNAs, they just don't have the work ethic like a blue does."

Megan Guido:                   So, what can you do if you are managing stressed-out blues? Well, there are a couple of key things that are really important to a blue. You need to stop and listen, and that takes time and patience, but that's really important. They don't necessarily want you to solve things, but you do have to take the time to listen to their concerns and acknowledge their efforts and all the hard work that they're doing, not in a condescending way.

Megan Guido:                   It needs to be sincere, but you need to acknowledge what they're doing and that they're under a crunch and that there is maybe an end in sight. Help them create some boundaries. It's okay for a blue to say no. It's very hard for them to do it and they're often very guilt-ridden, but you as the manager, that's your job to help them identify where it's appropriate to draw boundaries, and you need to draw some of those boundaries for a blue if they're not able to do it themselves.

Megan Guido:                   And help a blue realize that folks have positive intent, different colors express their connection to human beings and patients and coworkers differently than a blue, and you need to be respectful of that as a blue. It's not always going to look exactly like you think it should. So, those are just some tips for helping blues, who you work with a lot in healthcare, and you as a manager can help them during tough times. I hope that's helpful. For now, this is Megan Guido with, What's your M.O. in Healthcare?

 

How to use Color Code in the workplace

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Welcome to what's your motive in healthcare, the podcast that's all about understanding the core motive of the people you work with and manage in healthcare. Hi there, I'm Megan Guido, your host for what's your motive in healthcare. And today I have a very special guest, Dorcas Hirzel. She is a fellow color-code trainer and healthcare professional who's worked in hospital settings as a nurse in charge of risk management, regulatory and quality control. Dorcas, thanks so much for coming on my podcast and we have worked together for a very long time. We have, and I'm just thrilled to have you here. How  long have you worked in health care? 

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The four core motives in healthcare.

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Today I'm talking about Color-Code, a personality assessment tool that I've been using for more than 10 years in healthcare settings to help teams be more effective. There are lots of personality tests out there, right? There's Myers-Briggs, there's DISC, but Color Code is different. It was developed by a psychologist, Dr. Taylor Hartman and Color Code goes beyond just the behaviors of people, which most personality assessments look at the what, what is someone doing? It digs in deeper to the why, their motive for doing what they do. In other words, trying to understand why that person always needs to be right, or why that person seems overly sensitive. You know, "I can never say the right thing. It always offends her." Or "Why can't, a person does make a decision? They seem really indecisive." Color Code helps you understand why someone behaves the way they do by understanding their driving core motive. 

It's more than just a fun assessment.

It is a valuable tool that will help you navigate relationships and be a more effective teammate and manager. I should know, I've been teaching it, like I said, for more than 10 years in hospitals and healthcare, healthcare organizations. And I see that incredible impact it has on people. Like the light bulb goes off for people. All of a sudden they're like, "Oh, that's why I'm not getting along with that person because they see the world and they're motivated by things totally different from me." The benefit of color code is it can help you as a manager except and utilize the strengths and talents of your teammates and of the people that you manage more effectively. It can help you communicate with them based on their needs and their wants. And isn't that an incredible gift as a manager to know how to work more effectively with your team? 

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Why you are 100% responsible for your relationships.

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Today I'm going to talk about a key concept around color code. It's this idea of a hundred percent responsibility, so what do I mean by that? Well, most of us consider relationships kind of a 50 50 2-way street, right? We are taught to believe that if you bring 50% to the relationship, hopefully, your partner or your colleague will bring 50% that isn't always the case. In fact, color-code is turning that on its head and saying, no, you need to bring 100% responsibility to the relationship. You may think that's not fair. That seems like a lot of work. What about the other person? Well, most people in life know that you really can't change other people. 

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Introduction to Color Code: Core motive & Colors

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I'm Megan Guido, and I'm so excited about starting a new podcast called, What's Your M.O. in Healthcare? So, everybody has challenges around communication, building strong relationships, teamwork, working with people of different generations, and understanding what drives people because I don't know about you, but there are some people I just don't get. And that's what this podcast is all about, but it's dedicated to people working in healthcare.

Why healthcare? Well, healthcare is going through an incredible evolution. Things are changing all the time, whether it's government regulations or reimbursement models or just the stress from taking care of people and burnout and those kinds of issues that everyone deals with. So, those are unique to this industry. That's why I'm hoping that you will join my for, What's your M.O. in Healthcare?, to help you navigate those changes and to help you build strong quality relationships, understanding people's core motives, understanding what drives them, understanding what values different generations have, and we'll throw in a little bit of coaching and tips on communication.

I hope you find value. I'm super excited. We'll have special guests, people who have been doing this for a long time, have worked in healthcare and understand those challenges. So, join me for, What's Your M.O. in Healthcare?