In today’s healthcare climate, change has become inevitable. As Artificial Intelligence becomes common place and administrative responsibilities become automated, it is no surprise that the healthcare leaders of today cannot evade change forever. A recent study of CEO’s reported that 90% of Corporate Executives believe that their organizations will change more in the next 5 years than they have in the past 5. And while it’s one thing for executive leaders to welcome industry change, creating a culture that embraces such change can be something completely different.
Below are 3 practices every leader can incorporate into their strategy to help their teams be more change-oriented:
1. Start by giving examples of success stories. While it is crucial for leaders to offer some explanation into why change is necessary, it can be helpful to provide staff with success stories to better paint the picture. In order to provide staff with a full understanding, consider the following:
- What is meaningful and important to the people I’m working with now?
- What is the core idea I want them to take away?
- What essential parts of the story invite them to come along on the journey?1
2. Create dialogue. When rolling out a new strategic initiative, transparency is the best way to get buy-in from your staff nursing team(s). The following are essential for transparent leadership:
- Operating and capital budgets, market share, and the role of labor cost in the budget
- Performance on key clinical business
- Strategic goals of their institution
- Market share
- Labor costs/margins
- Institutional strengths, new programs and plans
- Benchmarks with direct-care nurses2
3. Set clear expectations. By providing an open, transparent environment where there is clarity of expectations, individuals have the ability to meet outcomes using their personal expertise and capabilities. It is important to consider the following in order to clearly define goals and objectives:
- What is required to consider the change a success?
- Are there particular processes that are in need of redesign?
- Are there departments or physician groups that require continued communication and support?
- What are the constraints that the team must work within (e.g., no additional staff, expenditures within budget)?
- Is there consistency in beliefs and assumptions among those who leave your facility?
- Do staff members believe rewards are distributed equally?
- Do management tempers frequently flare up?
- Are management behaviors consistent, or do staff members always have to be alert for the decision of the moment?
- Do you support innovation and change?
- Is your approach consistent, or does it reflect the issue of the moment?3
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1 Onderick-Harvey, E. (April 3, 2019) 5 Ways To Help Your Team Be Open To Change
2Barnard, C. (July 28, 2010) Four Basic Rules For Engaging Direct-Care Nurses In Quality Improvement
3Michek, K. (May 11, 2018) Lead The Charge For Change And Innovation