Posted December 12, 2014

Achieving Organizational Alignment through an Objective Evaluation Tool

In order to create a culture of excellence - one with accountability at the foundation – leaders must be aligned in a meaningful way to the strategic plan and goals of the organization. Through over a decade of coaching healthcare organizations, Studer Group and its partner organizations have proven an objective evaluation tool is key to the alignment and achievement of outcomes. The Leader Evaluation process is a critical part of Studer Group’s execution framework, the Evidence-Based LeadershipSM model, where aligning metrics to key stakeholders and helping them to understand the urgency for each measure is a crucial part of this framework.

One 25 bed organization utilized Studer Group’s Five Pillar approach alongside of the Leader Evaluation Manager® (a software accelerator) to establish goals for leaders and track progress toward those goals. The five pillars used in this organization are designed to guide operational performance and ensure the mission remains central to the work towards achieving outcomes. This ensures the alignment of a goal to the pillar where leaders are working together for a common purpose.

This organization utilizes several Studer Group tactics and tools to support the achievement of their “pillar synergy,” including rounding on direct reports, AIDET®, and pre-visit phone calls, to name a few.  These tactics are monitored for consistency and observations learned as a result of the execution of these tactics are centrally tracked through one specific accountability tool within the Leader Evaluation Manager®, the 90-Day Plan.  The plans serve as a tool for leaders to proactively discuss progress and barriers with their supervisor as part of their monthly supervisory review.  Their CFO shared that this level of “Pillar Synergy” enabled the organization to advance many results organizationally, specifically their Clinic Days in Accounts Receivable moved from 80 days to 35, Cash Flow Margin improved from 2.4 percent to 4.8 percent, and other key financial successes.

Another organization utilized the Leader Evaluation Manager® and 90-Day Plans for similar reasons identified above - to ensure the right leaders have the right measures with the right sense of urgency and are consistently deploying the right action plans to move results.  With this combination, the organization was poised to identify barriers to success and more easily align their teams to focus on the changing landscape should the need arise.  Through real time review of performance, the organization identified an opportunity to focus on improving the perception of their patients specifically related to the Pain Management domain of their HCAHPS survey.

With guidance from their Studer Group Coach at the time, the organization decided mid-year that there was not enough focus on pain management and began to align key stakeholders to better manage the pain of the patient.  Their first step was to ensure that all areas who had the ability to impact the metric indeed had the goal and understood the urgency placed on the goal.  Priorities ranged from 10 of 100 percent total points for individuals with the least direct control like the CEO, to 15 of 100 percent for more direct contributors like Pharmacy and Radiology, to finally 30 of 100 percent for the Hospitalists and Nursing team members – those directly at the bedside of the patient.

In just two years, their percent excellence score for Pain Management - Staff’s Management of Pain increased significantly in several areas of the organization:

  • Inpatient improved from 46.1 percent to 59.5 percent  
  • Outpatient  Surgery improved from 58.1 percent to 67.6 percent
  • Emergency Department improved from 29.6 percent to 46.2 percent

Until leaders feel the urgency to align their behaviors to outcomes of the organizational and collaborate with other departments, the behaviors simply don’t stick and the mission of the organization is at risk. Utilizing Studer Groups Evidence-Based LeadershipSM framework, and ensuring key stakeholders have the right goals and solid action plans in place, the organization is more likely to sustain high levels of success over time.

Additional Resources:

  • If you would like to connect with a Leader Evaluation expert, please contact Partnerships@StuderGroup.com.
  • The Leader Evaluation Manager® (LEM) aligns individual leaders and resources to an organization’s goals. Learn how the LEM offers stronger goal alignment, leadership agility, enhanced accountability and proven metrics that achieve organizational outcomes.
  • Learn how an objective evaluation system is the key to alignment and accountability in sessions at each of our Conferences.
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