Why saying "Welcome" matters...

This month we are piloting a 'You Got This' welcome programme for new staff starting in our department. The idea is simple. When you start working with us, we will send you a little something through the post with a card. We basically want to say "Welcome. We are looking forward to meeting you. We are excited about working with you." Do we need to do this? Does it matter? There are, of course, lots of ways of welcoming people to a new job and this is just one.

The key point is that taking the time to welcome people to a new job or department can be important in ways that are difficult to fully quantify. Welcoming people properly makes them feel more at ease, develops a culture of warmth and care and says something about the kind of department and team in which we work. It can be difficult to make time for a proper welcome in a busy department and in the pressure and fast pace of providing acute clinical care. But to develop meaningful professional relationships with our colleagues and to embed them fully in the teams in which we work it is so important to welcome them properly. Not just to say 'hi' but to really communicate to each other that, as healthcare staff, we matter, we care, we value and need each other.

So whoever it is and whether it's with a gift, a card or simply a warm word on their first day, let's let our new colleagues know that we are pleased to see them and that they are welcome.

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