Leading Through Change
The pace of transition can be breakneck or slow and measured; but in either case, some senior leaders are proving old dogs can yet learn new tricks—because they must.
This article first appeared in the March 2015 issue of HealthLeaders magazine.
Healthcare is changing in significant ways. The industry is migrating to a highly connected world that is growing more transparent. Meanwhile, the very measures of success for healthcare organizations are shifting.
In such an environment, physicians, nurses, and other employees look to the C-suite to make sense of it all and to help them understand their organization's place in healthcare's future. But effectively developing and translating a strategy into a new set of policies, expectations, and desired results would be difficult for anyone, especially those who have reached their lofty positions by excelling at a business model that becomes more outdated and irrelevant with each passing day.
The pace of the transition can be breakneck or slow and measured; but in either case, some senior leaders are proving old dogs can yet learn new tricks, because they must.
A change in mind-set
First, CEOs must understand the major shift around the concept of value, says Al Cornish, system vice president and chief learning officer at Norton Healthcare, a Louisville, Kentucky–based system that includes five hospitals, 12 immediate care centers, and more than 90 physician practice locations. Cornish built and developed the leadership development component of Norton University, which provides education, organizational development, and training for the system.
Then, CEOs have to translate that understanding into actions they expect other leaders in the organization to undertake, even if the course may be risky and experimental.