Though stress in the C-suite is ratcheting up as finances become tighter each day, industry observers say not all executives should become glum.
Tough times are a good and real excuse for hospital executives to exert pressure on vendors and suppliers.
Dont get depressed about it. There are opportunities out there, said Ed Giniat, U.S. leader of KPMGs healthcare division. Theres ways to strengthen the organizations despite all thats happening around us.
As money for capital projects dries up, many vendors are going to become hungry for business in 2009. Why not try to renegotiate prices then? The same applies to banks, which might be eager to accommodate a large organization like a hospital in order to keep their accounts, Giniat said. Physicians may also be willing to come to the bargaining table.
The bigger an organization is, the more likely it can find these opportunities. Scale does in fact matter, and the larger organizations are stronger in general, Giniat said. The larger organizations will be able to absorb more and have more staying power.
Providers in good financial positions who are prepared to act rapidly will be able to take advantage of such opportunities.
In times of business stress, the strongest executives are not being predatory, but they understand that there are different opportunities, said Jim Gauss, president and chief executive officer of Witt/Kieffer. Even in this turbulent time, undoubtedly there are continuing business opportunities.