Strategic Priorities

Building & sustaining a positive workplace

Western Health will build a culture where all employees and volunteers will recognise negative workplace behaviours and feel empowered to participate in the creation of a positive work environment for themselves, their colleagues and our patients.


Western Health policies and procedures on the management and prevention of workplace bullying and harassment will be comprehensive and widely disseminated. The strategy which is the subject of this document will be incorporated into those policies.

Forums will occur with key groups of employees, to directly address the subject of negative and inappropriate workplace behaviours and to promote accountability.

Develop a communication strategy to support the launch of the Sustaining a Positive Workplace strategy, including a dedicated webpage and widespread promotion of key messages and highlighting new resources and processes.

Recruit a dedicated network of Workplace Culture Advocates from the senior leadership group and at various other levels and across professional disciplines. The advocates will receive training in managing negative behaviours and will become the front line response representatives.

Implement a clear guide to expected conduct, in consultation with each of the clinical and non-clinical professions that will reflect a commitment to act, in accordance with their professional standards.

Both the People Matter and JMS Wellness Survey results will be shared across the organisation and action plans developed to address the findings.

Policies and procedures on the management and prevention of negative workplace behaviour will be in plain language, easily understood (the content will be tested with key audiences), highly visible and widely disseminated.

Western Health will implement training and development programs that focus on prevention as well as management of negative workplace behaviours. These programs will assist employees and volunteers to reflect on how their behaviour impacts on others, as well as how employee and volunteer interactions impact on patients.


Develop and implement a specific program for the Workplace Culture Advocates using the hierarchy of control model and disseminate to all senior managers and leaders.

Provide refresher training for People and Culture, OH&S and managers in dealing with employee complaints of bullying and harassment.

Develop and implement an online module on negative behaviour, bullying & harassment and introducing the hierarchy of control.

Review leadership development programs/pathways to ensure reflection/inclusion of values driven leadership and management.

Western Health will implement a system aligned with the hierarchy of control to allow employees and volunteers to report negative workplace behaviours in a safe and constructive way. Western Health will use the hierarchy of control model to provide a clearly articulated graduated response from early intervention through to disciplinary action, to allow both informal and formal systems to operate and be matched to behaviour and the level of responsiveness to the requirement for change.


Develop and implement a reporting system that allows anonymous informal reporting of negative or inappropriate workplace behaviours. The initial action will involve a Positive Workplace Advocate and individual discussions at the local level.

Create and pilot a working group with the JMS as a support panel for providing advice to senior management on workplace behaviour change, while also providing clear points of contact for JMS who prefer to seek advice at this level in the first instance.

Initiate a stress hazard management assessment in areas where the monitoring of issues demonstrates recurrent themes associated with negative workplace culture. This would be matched to Level 3-4 behaviours.

Scope and trial an approach where aggregated feedback is collected as part of assessment process in medical training program and is provided back to individual clinicians and potentially affects ongoing employment at Western Health.

Western Health will develop a mechanism to capture data and inform trends in a way that protects our staff, so they feel safe to report incidences of negative behaviour, in a manner which will also respect the rights of individuals and the need for fairness. This information will be used to continually improve our strategies.
Western Health will monitor and measure all organisational data that may indicate workplace bullying or negative workplace culture.

If data indicates a need for further remedial action or prevention strategies, the strategy which is the subject of this document will be refined and updated.


Develop a quarterly report that identifies trends and the number of formal complaints as they relate to negative workplace behaviours

Western Health will evaluate elements of the strategy and provide feedback to the organisation. Where success occurs, it will be celebrated and acknowledged and conversely where negative workplace behaviours continue, actions will be taken and reported to the organisation.


Inspire Awards and The Chief Executive’s Positive Workplace award specifically acknowledge and celebrate examples of teams or individuals who model the Western Health Values, have worked to improve the culture of their environment and address negative behaviours.