Advice

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America’s favorite doctor offers remarkable insight into how to improve communication

Enlightening perspective on how to improve the care experience for patients sometimes comes from unexpected places. It might not surprise you to learn that one of America’s best-known, most-beloved doctors has authored a book that provides great insights into how to make communication in health care better – until you learn that that doctor is Hawkeye Pierce.

Since he retired as the head surgeon in the 4077th M*A*S*H unit on the iconic 70s television Read More

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The Power of Empowerment: “The Village has it Handled!”

In a leadership workshop earlier this month at Summa Health in Akron, OH, a manager shared one of the most definitive, straightforward affirmations of true staff empowerment that I’ve ever heard.  She explained that often when an issue or problem arises, by the time she becomes aware of it and approaches her team to work through a solution, she is confidently told, “Don’t worry; the village has it handled.”

Empowerment is a frequently vaunted goal Read More

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Workplace Etiquette | 3 Tips for Dealing with Politics (or Other Touchy Subjects)

Regardless of how you lean, leave politics at home.

Sometimes, inspiration for my weekly blog post comes from unexpected places – like a quiet, late-evening dinner on the road.

After a successful day with a client recently, I arrived back at my hotel for a later-than-usual dinner. There were only a few people left in the restaurant, and I was seated near a table of three gentlemen. While I wasn’t interested in eavesdropping, it was Read More

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Everyone Can Be a Caregiver (Even a CEO!)

Several years ago I was leading a management workshop at a very large health system. With over 200 people in the room, there was spirited discussion about the opportunities and obstacles to improving the patient experience in the system’s hospitals. I noticed one of the leaders patiently holding her hand up near the back of the room and made my way back to give her the microphone.

She hesitantly started, “I’m the director of Environmental … Read More

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Why Real Empathy Has to Start with Real Listening

Visiting with patients during rounds is one of the things I love most about my work with health care providers across the country. I remember conversations with patients that cover the range of emotions – uplifting, sad, funny, disheartening, frustrating … and almost always humbling.

But it is a conversation with a paraplegic patient at a HealthSouth acute rehabilitation hospital a few years ago that I still reflect on often because of the important lesson Read More

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