The Lay of the Land
Hospitals and healthcare organizations are required to address expectant standards of care in the delivery of their services, based on regulatory and accrediting entities. The requirements are representative of the specific regulatory agency’s mission. Evidenced-based medicine, best practices, and delivering high quality of care through clinical patient outcomes, contribute to obtaining a gold standard of care in our healthcare industry. Governing and leadership standards are shared by the American College of Healthcare Executives, and The Joint Commission, that provide framework to support best industry practices among top leadership. These standards are greatly appreciated, since healthcare in America is one of the most complicated and complex organizations to lead.
Leadership Styles Matter
What is often not clearly identified, are the leadership styles “best suited” to lead healthcare organizations. Other industries have been more intentional in identifying the leadership styles that align more with its overall success. Our United States military has standardized their leadership expectations to achieve great success in each branch of the military. Leadership philosophy and styles can be the fundamental factor in the success, and unfortunate failure, of any organization.
For a much different example, the leader that operates a children’s daycare needs to be specific in behavioral actions to successfully meet the needs of the children, as well as the parents that entrust their children to their service. It is easy to conclude that different types of leadership styles work more optimally in certain industries.
I have observed for years, working closely with people in leadership positions within healthcare. There is no question that there are a wide variety of leadership styles, philosophy, and behaviors from one healthcare leader to the next. This observation, and by understanding the specific needs of a successful healthcare organization, leads me to suggest that healthcare could be best served if there were a “Gold Standard” or identified leadership styles for top positions in America’s Healthcare system.
Personality tests and leadership style assessments note that certain personality traits align better with some leadership positions than others.
Understanding leadership styles, and job positions that are best suited to specific industries is hopefully being addressed in our higher learning educational industries, and among various professional associations.
Healthcare Leadership by Design
Let’s consider if healthcare executives were provided Gold Standards representing Best Practices, and Evidenced-Based Leadership, designed specifically for leading and operating healthcare organizations. What if, as an aspiring healthcare leader, you knew there was a trusted path, or leadership curriculum that you could engage to reduce a career of hard knocks? What if as a seasoned healthcare leader you modeled a Gold Standard of Leadership that helped develop the future leaders of your organization?
Having Gold Standard leadership for oversight of our complex healthcare systems is a must to restore our healthcare system to being the best in the world. To assume that all healthcare leaders innately know the best practices to engage for success in culture, quality, finance and governance is wishful thinking. In fact, assumptions like that lead to failure for many organizations.
Oklahoma hospital files bankruptcy according to the Becker’s Hospital CFO Review online publication for January 17, 2017, and sadly joins an additional 9 more hospitals that have filed in 2016. Quorum adds 6 more hospitals to the sale pipeline. Kindred to close Texas hospital, leaving 92 out of job. This current report does not include the many hospitals that have already closed their doors over the past few years, that also is a grave community concern.
Other news in the Becker’s Review relates to the revolving door of CEOs, and senior level staff that turns over in an unprecedented volume and startlingly high rate. It is just too overwhelming to stay abreast of who is where in the top leadership roles in the American healthcare system.
Choose Your Leaders Wisely
Caring governing boards in healthcare organizations know what is important to them in assessing applicants in top leadership positions, but do they know the Best Practice or the Gold Standards for healthcare leadership that will serve their organization optimally? Are they recruiting by this criterion, and using these standards in evaluating their top leader? Leadership alignment to healthcare is critical for sustainable success in the healthcare industry.
The Time is Now
As top executives in healthcare, the need is to lead our organizations and our industry’s future effectively from within our industry, utilizing Gold Standards of Leadership. Gold Standards in leadership serve all leaders, prevent many unnecessary failures, and restores stability to our industry.
The time for a Gold Standard Leadership path is now.
Corporate TranscendenceⓇ Gold Standard Curriculum
Pamela Tripp is the author of the Leadership Gold Standard Curriculum, “Corporate TranscendenceⓇ.” This curriculum is an award-winning Gold Standard Leadership pathway to sustainable excellence, for leaders who desire to take their organizations from status quo to excellence in culture, quality, finance, and governance accountability. Contact Pamela for more information, or read about it in her latest book, The Culture Cure: Transforming the Modern Healthcare System.