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  • Chuck Hulse

In the Backpack

We at MedMan are on the road a lot. One of the most valuable tools is not a tool at all, but a holder of tools. The backpack. It has everything I need to bring a toolkit of success to medical practices. Here is what I am talking about:

Oh… one more thing for success…it cannot be contained in a backpack. Indeed it is quite ethereal. It is everywhere but hard to see. I can’t bring it to a client. I can come and go, but it stays on-site and it drives success. It has been defined as “the way we do things around here”. You named it - It’s the culture.

CEOs, Executive Directors and Practice Administrators create the culture, right? Not exactly, but they do set the tone for culture. Establishing and reinforcing culture is a leadership responsibility, and leaders permeate the organization at every level. Like the baby left on the doorstep, suboptimal culture is not your fault, but once you become aware of it, it is your responsibility. So what’s a leader do to? Follow these two rules – Model it and Mentor it.

Model it

If you want emails short and to the point – maybe the Bottom Line Upfront method – then make your emails like that. Want meetings to start on time, be on time. Want people to listen more and talk less, practice active listening, and so forth.

Mentor it

In healthcare, we are dealing with unprecedented pressure on results, fueling burnout and lack of respect in the workplace. Have the courage to make it a conversation with leadership and managers at every level. Call out aberrant, undesirable behavior. One of our clients ends each Partner meeting with “how are we doing?” This week someone suggested that the provider orientation include a discussion of expectations and “norms” of the organization.

Loyalty, Respect, Integrity, Sharing – MedMan values that define our culture – In the Backpack.

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