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Powerful Advice for True Patient Advocates: “Thou Shall Not Stand Idly By”

During this year’s graduation season, my alma mater Washington University in St. Louis published a brief but compelling article titled, “A decade of lasting lessons.” Recalling meaningful advice from commencement speakers and honorees over the past ten years, the article offered counsel from personalities ranging from retired Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa to “Meet the Press” moderator Tim Russert (who sadly passed away just one year after his speech to Washington U. graduates).

While all of Read More

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The Ultimate Compliment for Healthcare Providers

It was almost nine o’clock in the evening when I finally arrived at my hotel in Indianapolis from a long day of meetings and travel in preparation for the full-day workshop I would lead the next day. I was tired, but I was also hungry. I asked the front-desk clerk as I checked in if there was a place nearby where I could still get a quick bite. She pointed across the lobby and said, Read More

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In patient experience work, there’s no “Silver Bullet.” But are you trying to keep too many plates spinning?

In a recent blog post, I argued that the problem of searching for a single, easy-to-implement patient engagement tactic goes beyond the fact that one doesn’t exist. Believing that a simple silver bullet strategy is out there actually stymies continuous improvement, innovation and effective implementation.

So if there is no single silver bullet, one might reasonably jump to the conclusion that a shotgun approach – implementing multiple solutions simultaneously – would produce better results. Read More

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Three Messages Your Staff Want and Need to Hear Most

Whether you are a senior executive, middle manager or frontline staff member, health care seems to get more complicated every day. Endless regulations, increasing financial challenges, pressures to guarantee quality and safety. And now, the uncertainty of health care reform.

But while the issues become increasingly complex, the communication frontline health care professionals need most from managers arguably becomes more straightforward, focused and— perhaps counterintuitively— basic as times get more complicated.

Think about frontline employees’ … Read More

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Effective Leadership Communication: How to diminish the “F” factors that discourage employees from speaking freely

In a recent blog post titled, “Are Exit Interviews a Waste of Time?” I shared the observations of the chief human resources officer of a large, international corporation. He pointed out that employees heading out the door rarely are open about all of the true reasons for leaving because they fear burning bridges.

The article “Can Your Employees Really Speak Freely?” from the January-February 2016 issue of the Harvard Business Review provides a Read More

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