Employee engagement isn’t something you can buy. It isn’t something you implement with shiny new software or bribe into existence with discounted concert tickets.

If you want real engagement, you need to build a culture that can sustain it. What does an “engagement-sustaining” culture look like? Here are two key elements:

  1. Working conditions that make it easy for employees to do their jobs.

  2. Employees who have what engagement expert Vicki Hess calls positive “internal beliefs” about their work.

It may not be easy to create engagement-sustaining working conditions, but it is at least straightforward. Streamline clinical workflows. Reduce overtime and increase compensation. Help your employees focus on the work they want to do- patient care.

But what happens when engagement-sustaining working conditions aren’t enough? Healthcare is tough. Your employees can witness several types of life-or-death drama all before lunch. Sure, your healthcare organization can run like a knife through butter. But your care providers can still burn out just because of the seemingly-unceasing suffering.

An antidote to this kind of disengagement? Meaningfulness. According to the Society for Human Resource Management, one of the top three conditions for employee engagement is the perceived “meaningfulness of the work.” If your employees believe their work has meaning, they will put in their best effort even when things get challenging. If your employees believe in your organization, they will stay at their positions longer.

So what do you do? Cultivating meaningfulness in your workforce is less straightforward than eliminating logistical headaches. We’ve found that video can be a nice supplement to workshops and mentoring programs. Video storytelling has been scientifically-proven to change the way we think, feel and act. A good video can change the way your employees think about their work and your organization. Here are two ways hospitals can use video to encourage engagement-sustaining attitudes and behavior

  1. Video can remind care providers of the meaning innate in their daily work.

An early adopter of this kind of video was the Cleveland Clinic. In 2013, the Clinic produced a video titled “Empathy.” This video was intended to show the healthcare system from the perspective of patients.  “Empathy” went unexpectedly viral, and the Clinic produced an entire series telling the stories of real patients. Other healthcare organizations have since released similar series of their own.

Patient stories illustrate just how much of an impact care providers have. They can also show that recoveries are possible even in complex or critical cases. These kind of videos remind care providers that everything they do matters — that their work is innately meaningful.

  1. Video can communicate your organization’s mission.

Care providers can feel disconnected to the large healthcare organizations that employ them. Video is one way to bridge the gap between care provider and senior management.

Our clients have used video to connect with their employees. Their videos recognize exceptional care providers, or report the latest advances in medical research. In short, these videos show that management has common interests and goals as care providers.

When care providers believe leadership has the same goals as they do, they find meaning in their workplace. They believe in their organization’s mission. And they are far more likely to come to work each day engaged and eager to provide the best care possible.