When & How to Write a Policy

Last week I wrote about policies, why I love them and why they’re important to me as a Manager at a relatively new company. I also stated that this week I was going to tell you a bit about how to write a policy because, from the blogs and articles that I’ve read, this seems to be the part that most people struggle with. What I’d also like to talk about is at what point a policy should be written. When should a policy be put in place? What sort of event needs to take place to validate writing and implementing a new policy into your organizational structure?

In my opinion, whenever a new situation takes place that requires any sort of collaboration and/or discussion to come up with a solution, a new policy should be put in place. Something that explains that when ‘this’ happens, ‘this’ is what to do. It helps with eliminating the question of, “What do we do?” in the future should that event ever take place again. Not only do they serve as solutions to repeat problems, but they also serve as time savers. Rather than having to take time out of your work day to come up with a solution, you can easily pull up your policies and find the answer right away.

Now to focus on how to actually write a policy. Writing a policy is like writing a how-to guide on how to get yourself out of certain situations. The hard part is ensuring that it makes sense for whoever will be reading through it. When I write a policy, I think of why the policy is being put into place: Does your organization focus strongly on having a positive work environment? Do you believe that your staff should always show up to work and leave any drama or negativity at the door? Make a policy about it. I created a policy on professionalism just last week actually. It’s a policy that will be read to every new staff member at the time of hire to ensure that they know what is expected of them when they represent the company. To give you an idea of what the policies that I write look like, here is the Professionalism Policy that I wrote last week:

Plan A prides themselves on hiring healthcare professionals who will represent the company and its vision in a way that is positive and helpful at all times, regardless of the state of the morale in the facilities. ~ As previously mentioned, when I write a policy, I always I think about why the policy is being put into place. By listing that first, it answers the question of, “Why did they put this policy in place?”

Plan A employees will not discuss any personal issues or bring negative energy into any of the facilities in which we are contracted with while representing Plan A. Employees will not get involved with workplace politics or discuss issues that could be considered inappropriate or controversial at any time. ~ Give a quick explanation of the do’s and the don’ts to ensure the policy is carried out accordingly.

Should a formal complaint be filed against any Plan A employees by the Directors of Care regarding lack of professionalism while working in their facility, disciplinary action will take place. ~ Explain what will happen if the policy is not followed or carried out appropriately. This lets everyone know that if they do not follow the policy, there will be consequences.

I hope this quick tutorial provided you with some insight into how to effectively write a policy! It’s as easy as that; explain why, explain what to do or not do, and explain the repercussions that will come after if it’s not followed. Until next week! Thanks for reading!


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