I applaud the approach taken by John Mitchell. Having visited with more than 500 hospitals in the past four years, hospital culture is something many chief executive officers suggest they have. In fact, almost all of them would tell you they have a great culture or patient-centered environment.
However, few healthcare leaders have actually empowered frontline staff to make better choices for themselves and the patients they serve. Many organizations have given lip service to a great work environment, but continue to push initiatives around employee-scripting and using best practices to promote a healthy workplace and/or patient experience. These tactics of creating healthy workplaces actually drive out the innate talents that healthcare workers naturally possess. For this reason, were now seeing nurses who are leaving hospitalsnot healthcare.
Creating a great culture wont unlock all the outcomes that might be expected though. Surprisingly, there is a large number of health systems that are experiencing the inverse effect of creating a great culture. One health system recently reported winning a prestigious national award for being a great place to work, but their patient-satisfaction scores were in the 10th percentile nationally.
Great hospitalsand culturesfocus on the performance outcomes, not legislating the steps for each employee on how to get there. Once hospitals embrace this new reality, thats when their human potential will be unleashed to deliver an excellent patient/family experience.
Jared RatheVice PresidentMAJERS Research Institute Omaha, Neb.
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