he NHS needs every one of its 1.4 million staff, but nobody is perfect every day of their career. Human factors have a huge impact on staff and patients. After witnessing poor behaviour in the workplace, co-workers are less effective and patients have worse outcomes. An unpleasant working culture also reduces camaraderie in teams and can lead to resignations. This is a vicious cycle of overwork and burnout that the NHS can’t afford.
We need to nurture our workforce. In this BMJ opinion article, Scarlett McNally suggests focusing on three areas: expecting a minimum standard of behaviour at all times rather than perfectionism; identifying when intense focus is needed; and building effective teams. The minimum standard should be an expectation of “respect” at all times.