Teaming and problem-identification sessions with a tertiary care hospital's Pharmacy Department focusing on skill-building in the areas of accountability, coaching & feedback, empathic listening, and a problem-solving process. Identification and staff selection of specific areas in which the staff felt they could most significantly impact positive change along with self-selection onto one of ten task force workgroups focusing on each person’s chosen focus. Interim motivating and obstacle-resolving follow-up "On-Track" Team meetings and a final "Trials and Triumphs" workshop to celebrate successes and orient focus towards a self-propelled continuous improvement work community. Follow-up at one year demonstrated continued forward momentum.

 

Leadership Team Cohesiveness and Role Definition with a recently merged Orthopedic Group positioning itself to become a regional provider of excellence. While physician partners of new practice were working well together, the leadership and management were grappling with a host of concerns, amongst them legacy issues from their previous mode of doing business at their respective practices; leadership team cohesiveness; and alignment around role definition, scope of duties, accountability and appreciative acknowledgement. Our intervention entailed meeting with the leadership team in confidential individual interviews, determining the matrix of challenges that was thwarting their moving forward and developing and facilitating an all-day retreat for the leadership team. The offsite retreat specifically targeted the key themes identified in the interviews and provided tailored exercises and discussion focused on resolving identified impasses and enabling their working together as a cohesive team.  

 

Building management team cohesiveness and peer support within a hospital Respiratory Therapy department through a series of staff interviews and Team-Alignment off-sites. Staff Feedback included: “greater ownership of leads in assuming managerial responsibilities”. “New employees fit in a lot easier”. There is improved communication, people are more verbal; there is more honesty; better use of staff meetings; one-to-one feedback is better; there is an “overall reduction in inappropriate and negative talk and gossip”. There has been “significant headway made in moving away from RT/RN conflict”. “Overall, people have moved from a position of "victimhood" to actively taking ownership and doing something”

 

A dynamic suburban dental practice experiencing rapid growth sought assistance in examining how they could “Better Their Best”. They were interested in how to scale and optimize a smooth-running practice by capitalizing on their well-honed strengths, anticipating growth needs and identifying the exact areas that needed their collective attention. We were asked to help discern the key issues and to facilitate a retreat in which the whole practice  – the full staff and providers - could come together to flesh out the challenges, discuss strategies and make clear decisions on their change pathway. An on-line questionnaire was designed and the retreat agenda was determined from that. This off-site resulted in a stronger, more accountable team with a shared sense of clarity, increased ability to problem-solve, a noticeably more open degree of communication and a deeper sense of commitment to the shared mission of the practice.

 

A “Continuous Improvement” Initiative involving a Pediatric Hospital Rehab Unit that focused on working with the management group in it’s transition to more of a leadership team. This intervention included focusing on understanding management behavioral styles, developing more collaborative ways of working together, clarifying individuals’ expectations, building trust, and improving working relationships between managers and rehab unit staff.

 

 Worked with a Cardiology Group within a multi-specialty group to identify and clarify issues related to a rapidly escalating patient population and increased call duty which led to heightened interpersonal strain among themselves and the entire medical service delivery team. Though confidential detailed interviews, key contributing themes were determined and ranked by priority. A core agenda was created and a road map established that would address the exceedingly challenging impasses to team alignment. Clarifying key issues common to all, facilitating dialog enabling previously unrecognized issues to be spoken, and enabling authentic communication were the primary leadership and team development skills that were emphasized in this very focused project.

 

A Team Alignment undertaking with a hospital’s Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Unit that focused on reversing the identified "persistent lack of goodwill” that had become culturally embedded between immediate management and staff. Primary areas of concern included unacceptably large number of highly specialized and experienced RNs leaving the unit in a highly competitive recruiting environment; low morale and trust throughout the unit; and a strong staff feeling of being unsupported and unappreciated by managers.”

 

 The physician partners of a mid-size family practice that offers in-office procedures and specializes in geriatric illness, physical rehabilitation and also provides nursing home care wanted to find a way to strengthen their team, bolster their morale and prepare for practice expansion. We conducted staff interviews and designed and facilitated an off-site retreat specifically crafted to achieve both the stated goals of the partners and focus on identified areas of concern. One powerful motivation in particular was that the practice’s physician partners felt strongly about “investing in their people,” ensuring staff satisfaction and retention and instilling in them a greater sense of accountability and ownership for the success of the practice.

 

 

 Collaborative problem-solving with a 60+ member multi-site hospital-based sports medicine rehabilitation team.
 Overall well-functioning team facing a variety of challenges desired a cost-effective way to improve communication and team cohesion, along with a process to effectively address specific problems confronting the day-to-day operations. We constructed a questionnaire soliciting their key challenges as well as suggestions for optimizing patient satisfaction. Our multi-phase approach included a one-day workshop to foster trust-building and information sharing via summarizing questionnaire results, while introducing a collaborative problem-solving process. We also presented a systematic approach to positively manage stress and better promote individual and team resiliency. A follow-on session was devoted exclusively toward developing consensus around systematically tackling selected challenges and reminding the team of the importance of celebrating wins and re-convening regularly to address collaboratively chosen action items. 




 


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