Paul’s Post – What can we Stop doing?
Kate DeVuono, Program Assistant in the administrative suite was the impetus for this blog – she has some great ideas about what we can stop doing in order to create more time for the important stuff and she encouraged me to write this latest blog.
Over the past few weeks I have become extremely aware of the high degree of stress that our whole team at every level is under. While we cannot completely eliminate stress, we can control how we respond to it to a degree.
Last week, I asked all the VP’s and Directors to document their concerns as part of a creative problem solving approach to coping with stress.
The highlighted issues were as follows:
- Deep listening! Act on what you hear. When we ask for a pause – please pause!
- Learn how and when to say “No”
- Define the priorities and stick to them.
- Identify leaders and participants required (same people on multiple priorities)
- Develop a priority de-selection process
- Make sure the number of metrics are manageable so we don’t feel like we failed
- Allow flexibility and autonomy so managers can take the learning and implement in a way that works best for their units
We reflected on the major large work components that we need to support throughout the year which include:
- Clinical Daily Demands and Pressures
- Supporting our People
- Service Planning and Program Development
- More Time to Care
- All projects as a bundle
The big priority items need to be reprioritized every 3 months by the collective leadership group. For example, we agreed that budgeting and benchmarking was the priority for the next 3 months. There will be work happening consistently in all areas, but we should not be adding new components during a quarter when that large work component is not prioritized.
As a result the senior team and Directors will regroup every three months to look at affirming and deselecting priorities. For each major area, 1 or 2 sub-priorities will be selected. When looking at the priorities quarterly, we will be ensuring:
- relative focus
- rates (progress)
- consideration of participants and the demands on their time
- communication of the list of priorities and their status to managers and the physician group
The moral of the story is we have to respect each other as team members through active listening, learn to stop doing some things that are not as critical, and constantly clarify what the priorities are.
Please consider applying this advice with managers and front line staff. Thank you all for your incredible efforts.