First Fridays a Hit at Stratford

June 24, 2020First Fridays

Since the start of 2020, the Jefferson Stratford Hospital leadership team has found a fun way to thank staff members for their hard work and dedication: a monthly First Friday celebration created by Director of Nursing Diane Juliano and Chief Administrative Officer Diane Rossi.

Juliano, who joined Jefferson in 2019, had previously worked at a hospital that celebrated First Fridays for its nursing staff only. She approached Diane Rossi with the idea of taking it across all departments and the informal recognition program was launched in January 2020.

The idea is simple: go from department to department on the first Friday of each month (and the first Thursday for night-shift staff) to provide a small, lighthearted, themed ‘thank you’ treat for all Jefferson Stratford team members. The two Dianes, with input from administrative assistants Nichole Keane and Wendy Sutherland, come up with the monthly themed ideas.

“It’s like a traveling road show,” Juliano jokes. “We greet staff coming in at the employee entrance on the first Thursdays for the 3-11 shift and on the first Fridays, and then we travel around the hospital with the treats on a cart.” The themes sometimes tie in with holidays or the season – it was hot chocolate in January and “conversation hearts” for February (Valentine’s Day). In March, in honor of St. Patrick’s Day, staff received “We are Lucky to Have You” gold coin candies; in May, Cinco de Mayo got a nod with churros. June’s theme tied in directly with the battle against coronavirus: staff received Cracker Jack candy with the message that “Together, we can crack COVID.” In July, they’ll receive Bomb Pop® ice cream treats.The tie-in message? “You’re the Bomb!”

“Diane Juliano and I have so much fun doing this, as it gives us the opportunity to thank everyone, be creative and just connect with our team,” Diane Rossi said.

Plus, for staff, it’s something to look forward to. Is it the First Friday yet?