The attached report is an independent study carried out over several years. It is an interesting study in that it helps describe what is going on in a particular market area. It does not predict the future, but it does raise issues worth tracking. As I read it, I compared it to our 5 multi-year strategies:
1. Become a Total Health organization. Switch from a focus on output to outcome regarding healthcare.
2. Continue developing as a highly-integrated delivery system. This is where we become a physician-led organization and let that alignment accelerate improvements in quality and care.
3. Put in place the right infrastructure to improve the health status of groups of patients and become an Accountable Care organization.
4. Excel in the area of Academic Innovation as we train the next generation of physicians and care-givers.
5. Maintain a financially strong and viable organization.
I think we have made steady progress on all fronts, in particular, becoming highly-integrated. I am also reminded of the similarities between us and Spartanburg Regional Hospital – both of us hold a similar place of responsibility and prominence in our communities. I believe there are more opportunities for our systems and our communities to work together. I am interested in your thoughts.
If you would like to look over the report, CLICK HERE to read more.
The following video link of Governor Haley and DHHS Director Tony Keck talking about Medicaid and the state budget is, for me, a good example of leadership.
It does not mean I agree with all that is being proposed, but I do have tremendous respect for a Chief Executive that supports her leaders, puts forward a plan, makes tough choices and tries to bring different constituencies together…that is what leaders do.
Many who know me are aware of my relationship with the First Lady and the President from my time in Chicago. And, if you rode by our house before the last election you saw an Obama For President sign and if you ride by it again next year, you may see another. So, when it comes to healthcare, I will have my own set of views around what policy to support. But, as I told the GHS Hospital Board a couple of years ago, the strategy we are pursuing makes sense whether we follow a Republican or Democratic President. We need to Transform Healthcare – how much it costs, how we deliver care to improve outcomes, how we align with our doctors to become physician led, how we educate the next generation of physicians and caregivers and how we help other hospitals and the state face fiscal challenges.
The budget deficit is hundreds of millions of dollars – it is real and we need to work together to figure out how to increase revenue, reduce costs, and fulfill our mission. Sound familiar? It is what every Chief Executive, from the Governor to the small business owner is tasked with accomplishing. Count me in.
Let me know your thoughts about this entry or examples of leadership you want to share.
Furman is a fantastic resource for GHS and the community. I have met their new President, Rod Smolla, on several occassions and to say I am impressed is an understatement. Even though there has been a lot of discussion around our affiliations with the University of South Carolina (expansion of the School of Medicine) and Clemson University (primary research partner for GHS), I want to highlight all we do with Furman. I recently asked our VP of Academic Affairs, Brenda Thames, to give me a recap of our interactions with Furman and below are the highlights:
The Greenville Hospital System (GHS) and Furman University have a rich history of collaboration that led to a renewed commitment by creating the GHS and Furman Affiliation Agreement in 2009. The Agreement defines a working relationship between Furman and GHS focused on healthcare related educational and/or research opportunities.
See a brief description of current GHS and Furman initiatives below.
Brief Description of Programs/Projects
Medical Services for Students
GHS Department of Pediatric physicians provide medical coverage for the Furman Student Health Center daily and on call service. Dr. Paul Catalana is the Medical Director and has been for over 8 years.
- GHS provides sports physicals for Furman students.
Medical Experience (MedEx) Academy and Furman Strategic Engagement
- Furman is a “pipeline partner” and the pilot university for MedEx Academy Tier II starting Summer 2011 working with GHS to create a “real world” experience for rising juniors interested in a career in health care. These students will have an 8 week rigorous experience and will receive 4 credit hours upon successful completion of the program.
- Furman Student Services Coordinators (Susan Ybrarra) is working closely with GHS Director of Workforce Development (Al Squire) and the GHS Workforce Development Steering Committee
- MedEx Academy is linked to Furman’s Bridges to a Brighter Future program.
- Dr. Paul Catalana has on-going pre-med meetings with interested students and meets with Furman VP for Student Services monthly.
Student Observation Program
- Open each semester to a maximum of 25 Furman students to participate in observational experiences within various departments at GHS. This program is coordinated by Susan Ybarra. The purpose of this program is to provide students an opportunity to acquire knowledge that will allow them to make a more informed decision regarding their post graduate studies and career choices.
Medical Ethics Program
- Open each fall semester for a maximum of 25 Furman students to participate in observational experiences within various departments at GHS. This program is coordinated by Furman faculty Dr. Carmela Epright & Dr. Kristy Maher. The purpose of this program is to provide students an opportunity to acquire knowledge to analyze the ethical and sociological aspects of medicine, health care delivery, and clinical practice.
Health and Exercise Science Internships
- Open each semester for HES students to complete an internship at GHS (through Roger C. Peace, the Life Center or Kidnetics). This program is coordinated by Furman faculty Dr. Bill Peirce. The purpose of this program is to offer students the opportunity to gain knowledge and practical experience as they apply concepts learned in formal coursework to real life situations.
- Open each semester for students to complete an internship at GHS (through Heart Life). This program is coordinated by Furman faculty Dr. Matt Fiegenbaum. The purpose of this program is to offer students the opportunity to gain knowledge and practical experience as they apply concepts learned in formal coursework to real life situations.
OB/GYN Research Project
- This is an ongoing research collaboration project, “Role of Hydrocarbon Receptor and its ligands in Endometriosis and Infertility,” with Dr. Bruce Lessey (GHS), Dr. Eli Hestermann (Furman) and identified students.
CUR2E Research Program
- This is a summer research program for area undergraduate students. This program is coordinated jointly by Dr. Steve Trocha (GHS) and Dr. Christine Schammel and Dr. Laura Thompson (Furman). Students are selected through an application process.
Furman Summer Scholars Program
- This is a 1-week summer program for high school students interested in coming to Furman. Students come to GHS for simulation experiences. This program is coordinated by Susan Ybarra.
Yesterday was a good day, and by that I mean it was a day where I felt a personal connection to Purpose and Love while interacting with a group of about 30 leaders in the afternoon and our Neurology Group in the evening. In the leadership meeting we discussed skills and approaches for showing up at work and in the world with a sense of Purpose and Love. That evening, I was connected to Purpose by listening to Dr. Hughes talk about our Neurology group. I was wowed and felt a love and respect for what they are doing for patients and the community.
However, using the language of purpose and, in particular, Love has not always been the case for me. I think something happened when I entered mid-life. I starting surrounding myself with others who seemed to be seeking purpose in life and I gave myself permission to let go of a little bit of my ego (which served me well and not so well) and start looking a little deeper inside of me.
What motivated me to write on the above, was that I received two book recommendations from friends within the last 24 hours. I have not read either, but I plan to and I like the tittles. They are: “The True Measure of a Man: How Perceptions of Success, Achievement, & Recognition Fail Men in Difficult Times” and “The Heart Aroused: Poetry and the Preservation of Soul in Corporate America.” Even if I decide not to read them, they already served a purpose – connecting me to why I am here right now.
I would be wide open to hear how others connect to purpose and what helps you get there.
Every 90 days there is a flurry of activity as I do a series of Town Hall Meetings, this past month I completed my 18th. It is a good way for me to remind myself how long I have been here. Two more to go and I will hit the 5 year mark.
At the beginning of each meeting we showed the following video update. In about 12 minutes, it provides a good overview of what is going on in our system with regards to our Pillars (People, Service, Quality, Growth, Finance, and Academics.
After the video introduction, there is the Town Hall presentation. Here is a copy of that presentation. I believe it provides a great snapshot for where we are in relation to our strategy, goals, changes and challenges.
CLICK HERE if you would like to download the PDF of the presentation, especially if you are using a device that does not allow you to view the presentation in the above player.
Let me know what you think….thanks, Mike
A lot has happened, since my entry in December titled ”Power Breakfast,” to help move along the expansion of the University School of Medicine in Greenville. I think the following video by Dr. Spence Taylor, Chief Academic Officer, provides a brief udate and answers some questions you may be hearing:
I think it is also important to express my gratitude to the Upstate Delegation and the Greenville Chamber of Commerce. They clearly see the need for more physicians in the country, state and region and they have been vocal and visible in their support. The profound and positive impact on the health status and the economy of the region by having a 4 year Medical School Campus is well researched and documented. It speaks to our Vision of Transforming Healthcare for the benefit of the people and commuities we serve and our Mission to Heal Compassionately, Teach Innovatively and Improve Constantly.
If you have any questions or comments, please let me know.
We have a lot of leaders at GHS, about 650 if I include managers up to senior executives, and it is about the right amount for an organization of over 10,000 employees. Some are new managers and others have been around for awhile and promoted from within or hired from the outside. I believe leaders make the difference – this is something I learned in the Marine Corps. Officers of Marines receive a great deal of training on small unit leadership. That investment is the right place to put an organization’s resources. It is why we pull all 650 leaders off site every 90 days for a day of training. We want them to have the tools and skills they need to engage our workforce, reduce turnover, and increase employee commitment. And, with every new leader there is an opportunity to support that person and connect them to the past.
I really enjoy my interactions with leaders in our organization. I think they remind me of the energy and focus I put into every new leadership assignment I got. I wanted to be the best and to be different. I think that is good and I think it is not so good. I remember when I became President and CEO of the University of Chicago Hospitals. I was eager to do things my way and differently. What I forgot to realize is that by doing things differently, I did not have to take away from what had been done by my predecessor. I would subtly imply that my way was better than his. In fact, I tried to convince others that my way was needed to correct his mistakes. Perhaps it was after a conversation about how I was “fixing” things up that a former Dean and professor of the University of Chicago School of Business, Harry Davis, asked to meet with me. I had gotten to know him while at Chicago – he was smart, humble, fun, wise and non-threatening. In our meeting he never called me out on what critical comment I may have made, but he did talk to me about his thoughts on honoring the past. He had been doing some research and was saddened to see how often successors spoke poorly about a predecessor. He wondered if it was a lost opportunity for the new leader to build on the past and honor what another leader had done. All too often he noted how separation from the prior boss was used to falsely build one’s ego at the expense of another. I never forgot that meeting and afterwards, I rarely skipped a chance to show my appreciation towards one of the great leaders in health care, Ralph Muller.
I have carried that practice to Greenville and I look to honor the past whenever I can. I send my predecessor a thank you card every year. I acknowledge former Trustees that served many hours for GHS. That does not mean I have done everything like they would have, but it does mean that I know I did not get here alone and I am grateful for what they helped to build and what I have to work with. I have my lap to run and it will be different than theirs, just as the next President will run a different lap than me. So, I listen to new leaders and when I can, I set them at ease and let them know I want them to be the best they can be and not just “better than” the one before them.
Alcoholism runs in the family. Grandparents, children and friends. Even parents – I joke about it when people ask me about my father. I tell them he was Irish, 100 proof. I can laugh about it now and I have come to a place of acceptance that he did the best he could. In many ways, it has been a great teacher. There is an opportunity with illness, alcoholism is no exception. I have seen it at AA meetings and at meetings for family members impacted by alcoholism – Al Anon.
The more I was exposed to these meetings and the more I read about the 12 steps, the more I liked them and wondered if there were lessons for leaders. The following are a version on the 12 steps and in parentheses are my thoughts about how they may pertain to leadership.
1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol—that our lives had become unmanageable.
(This reminds me to keep my ego in check and remember my place in the world. Alcohol and power have some similar intoxicating effects. There are lots of examples where CEO’s have let their ego run wild, abused power, and hurt their organizations.)
2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity. (It may be lonely at the top, or I can claim that, but in truth I am not alone and I need help, especially from a source or Power greater than me.)
3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him. (How do I connect what people do at GHS to a higher purpose. What is seeking to emerge through us and how can I as a leader tap into that?)
4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves. (Humility and honesty – I don’t know it all!)
5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs. (How many leaders have ended a career because of a cover up?)
6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character. (This one feels personal, but I do think openness and humbleness can help leaders.)
7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings. (This has a personal application as well. I believe leaders need self-awareness to improve.)
8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all. (Here is where I think about the courageousness needed to lead.)
9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others. (Leaders that can admit they are wrong and genuinely apologize can help create a culture of openness and truth in an organization. Where “being right” is replaced by “being present.”)
10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it. (Awareness is not a one time event and clearing the air sooner rather than later can speed the process of working on a solution.)
11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out. (There is growing research about the power of quiet time, meditation in the healing process and for reduction of stress for leaders.)
12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs. (Leaders are important to the ones they lead and they are important because they train the next generation.)
I realize there may be many reactions to the topic of alcohol and leadership and I welcome yours.