Timing an internal campaign to win over the hearts and minds of employees before a major rebranding effort is key to the campaign's success, especially if the system that is getting rebranded is large. That's because employees' reach in the community is vast.
The old UF&Shands Logo
Timing the internal outreach is also tricky. UF Health, formerly UF&Shands, not only timed its internal campaign perfectly, but the academic health center and system in Florida also worked carefully to prepare the more than 22,000 employees to be ready and willing to go along with the system's new name and tagline.
Laying the foundation
The beginnings of a new path for the University of Florida Health Science Center and its partnership with Shands HealthCare actually began three years ago, in 2010, when David Guzick, MD, Ph.D., senior vice president for health affairs and president of UF Health announced the system's strategic plan called "Forward Together."
The plan was ambitious in that it aimed to bring together the hospital system, the medical school, the other health science colleges, research institutes, as well as physician practices.
At the time of the strategic plan, Shands employees and UF employees were functionally separate even though they often worked side by side. The two organizations were and remain legally separate entities, but their work and mission became a shared vision under Guzick's leadership.