Employees Before Patients: Heresy? Or Management Gold?
Instead, healthcare has historically operated as a command-and-control environment, they both argue. Instead, leaders should adopt a philosophy of "trust and track," as Spiegelman says, which frees up leadership teams and those working in their area to improve care from the bottom up.
Berrett says the constant focus on the patient's well being, ironically, can lead to harm if the culture can't back up that focus.
"Too often we, as healthcare providers, are so focused on the patient, that we forget to take care of ourselves," says Berrett. "That can lead to burnout, bullying, and disharmony. It's pervasive. You can do that for awhile, but eventually people become disenchanted."
Moving from what Spiegelman and Berrett call transactional leadership to transformative leadership requires leaders to focus on the "why" of the new initiatives they're pursuing. These are diametrically opposed, incentive-wise, from what the rank and file, and even clinical leaders in the organization, are used to.
That includes explaining that the moves are for the greater good, not necessarily because doing so will pad the hospital or health system's financial coffers.
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