30. July 2012 13:54
So, we all hate going to the doctor’s office for one reason or another, whether it’s because it’s not fun being sick, you hate needles, or it’s just a pain to take time out of your busy schedule. One of my biggest pet peeves is walking into my doctor’s office, checking in with the receptionist, filling out any necessary paperwork (which is normally about fifteen pages) and then you sit. You sit and wait for what seems like a lifetime, not knowing if you will be next or if the eight people sitting there along with you will be called back before you. No one gives you any idea of a time frame on how long you will be there. Everyone has his or her face buried in a magazine and not much conversation is had.
Well, all of that is about to change. Close your eyes and picture this. You enter through large wooden doors into a beautiful lobby area. Directly in front of you is a peaceful and serene waterfall. To your right is a big screen TV that takes up the entire wall. Right next to this is a cheerful chef making delicious chocolate chip cookies or a healthy chicken salad. A smiling face then greets you and introduces himself or herself as a member of the Life Guide team.
A Life Guide meets patients immediately upon entering the clinic and redirects them to a decentralized check-in area. This private, more intimate area allows patients to feel like their visit is one-on-one. The Life Guide helps with any paperwork and gives a brief tour of the clinic, and when the caregiver is ready, the Life Guide escorts the patient to a procedure room. No longer are patients sitting in a lobby, waiting and wondering how long it will be until they are seen by a caregiver. Sounds like a dream, doesn’t it?
Now open your eyes because this is the reality at one group of forward-thinking clinics. I recently went to a newly opened Mosaic Clinic in Kansas City, Missouri for a site visit, and as I was introducing new Voalte users to the solution, I kept asking myself, “What is this Life Guide position all about?” I learned that Life Guides are there to make patients feel as though they are not just numbers. Life Guides are welcoming, caring, and compassionate, and they help guide patients through the sometimes confusing and frustrating process of obtaining healthcare services. Most traditional clinics can make us feel like we’re trapped in the “hurry up and wait” game. We are checked in and paperwork is pushed through and we are left to wonder whether we will be there for ten minutes, one hour or half a day. In Kansas City, the status quo is no longer good enough. At Mosaic clinics, you, the patient, are the main priority from the moment you walk through those doors, and we all know there is no better feeling in the world than when someone makes you feel special. Inarguably, Life Guides are playing a critical role in solidly establishing Mosaic as a leader in this movement towards more comprehensive, personalized service. Nationwide clinics take note. We’re your patients, your customers, and THIS is what we want!
3. May 2011 13:16
On my way back from the 44th Annual AONE Conference, I couldn't help but think about Roger Nierenberg's morning keynote presentation and how it had such a profound effect on me. I had the distinct privilege of spending a few minutes with Roger Nierenberg after his "performance" and I must confess that, one-on-one, he is even more engaging, even more genuine, and even more charismatic than the amazing personality we experienced as a group. His book sold out in minutes after his presentation, but you can find it here.
It was interesting to see how Nierenberg compared the role of a maestro to a nurse executive. I was so moved by his presentation, I felt obligated to share my experience with you. Although I learned much more than the four "movements" listed below, these were the ones that stood out to me the most. I am more than happy to share the rest of my list so feel free to email me at email@example.com.
In a complex organization, the "conductor" must remain attentive to the boundaries and divisions within and across the organization. Each member of the orchestra has a different view of what's happening. And even the conductor - who is at the center of it all - can only imagine the view of the audience members. It is his role to translate the audience's experience to each member of the orchestra.
When Nierenberg illustrated the importance of each and every person's contribution to the performance, no other point in his entire presentation affected me so deeply as when the cymbal player described his single note. He then went on to demonstrate just how critical that single note is to the entire New World Symphony. Though I couldn't see the percussionist after the second playing of that movement, I can imagine him sitting tall in his chair and whispering to himself, "Yeah, I did that."
Channels of communication
Communication has always been a critical component in any industry - whether it is health care or music. Nierenberg noted, "Awareness travels across boundaries. Communication travels across boundaries. Just as importantly, how each travels varies widely."
Regardless of how the communication flowed, there was one thing that was absolutely necessary… Listening!
Listening for problems vs. listening for building
Each member of the orchestra tunes into the conductor's priorities when the conductor draws attention to something that went particularly well or when something didn't go so well. The conductor can instantaneously sensitize the entire orchestra to that priority. With a simple nod or a motion, a tempo can be adjusted, an emotion emphasized or a negative reaction muted.
One must also realize that there is a difference between giving direction and offering criticism. Direction points to the way things could be. Criticism points to the way things were. It's the difference between, "The percussions are too loud" and "Let's make sure the audience hears the woodwinds".
In order to build trust, get results
The conductor offers a vision, and it is up to the musicians whether they follow or not. Vision requires preparation. It equates to creating a whole new experience and then communicating it. If the musicians execute the vision and things improve, then the artists begin to put their trust in the conductor. And ultimately, that is the only way one gains credibility.
Again, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
if you're interested in the remainder of my list.