Category: Change Management

Big Changes Ahead for Healthcare: Be the Provider not the Patient

 

Speaking to audiences on managing change in the healthcare industry, I often compare hospitals and clinics that are content with clinging to an outmoded mindset to patients awaiting miracles rather than getting legitimate medical help.

No matter your place in the healthcare system, change is either at your doorstep, or it’s coming at you from all directions. The changes are not coming quietly, and will demand a new vision.

Dr. Stephen Klasco, interviewed for Modern Healthcare (May 2019), said:

“We’re going through a once-in-a-lifetime change in healthcare from a B-to-B [Business to Business] model to a B-to-C model [Business to Consumer]; the physician and administrator as the boss to the patient is the boss. If you believe that … you have to fundamentally change how you view things.”

The medical facility and its providers must have the determination to manage the changes sweeping over the industry.

Managing Healthcare Change from All Directions

About a year ago, healthcare writer A.J. Abrawal identified at least six factors that are bringing about change in the industry:  technological advancements, a shift to practices that are more for-profit than non-profit, the changing landscape of the Affordable Care Act, the widespread use of patient data, the modernization of payment options, and more readily available healthcare advice.

Taking any of the changes identified and combining them with Dr. Klasco’s comment, it is easy to envision a scenario where healthcare is soon to become increasingly closer to a supermarket concept of picking and choosing options from a shelf. In fact, it’s about to become literal. For example, the October 4, 2019 issue of Supermarket News states:

“Next month, Sam’s Club plans to begin testing a program that offers members bundles of health care services — including medical, pharmacy, dental and vision care — for a low annual fee. [It is] Called Sam’s Club Care Accelerator Together with Humana.”

It is a given if the Sam’s Club model becomes successful, other national supermarket and wholesale stores will follow. By bundling services, consumers are manifesting a desire to implement a set of changes that the healthcare industry should have seen evolving quite some time ago.

In a 2018 survey sponsored by Aetna, it was seen that patients clearly want greater choice in their care. They want a more holistic approach of diet and exercise rather than relying on a practice for all of their care. Patients are more educated about their desires and treatment than ever before. The study summarized, in part, the findings in this manner:

“It’s clear that in the changing health care environment, transforming care delivery means considering care of the whole person. New care models such as value-based care, in which doctors are rewarded for improving patient outcomes, are creating opportunities to do just that…”

In this shift patients are wanting more choice and asking more questions. They are literally shopping for the best combination of services for their needs, and overall, they are demanding much greater transparency in how they are treated and billed. The industry will have no choice but to change to meet these needs in the years to come.

Book Scott Burrows, Motivational Healthcare Industry Change Management Speaker for your next healthcare industry meeting through this website or by calling us at: (520) 548-1169

 

Are You Determined to Be a Change Agent for Your Company?

As a motivational speaker for companies facing ongoing industry challenges in the marketplace, I am fascinated by change agents who have the determination to step up and make a meaningful impact in their organizations.

Who are the Change Agents in Your Company?

When I am delivering keynote addresses on change management, I often ask the following question of audience: “Picture the change agents in your organization. Whose face comes to mind?” The most common answers include the CEO, the human resources director or even the social media department.

In an insightful article that appeared in Forbes magazine, business writer stated “Change management is no longer a term that denotes only operational improvements, cost efficiencies and process reengineering…change management has become a much bigger, more interwoven part of the overall business fabric…that plays into everything that we do, every day, and how we go about getting things done, regardless of hierarchy or rank.”

The change agent includes the marketing manager, the accounts payable people and you. In fact, the most important change agent in your company is you, whatever your position on the hierarchy of the corporate ladder.

We are All Change Agents

Earlier this year, the management department of Michigan State University presented an article entitled The Qualities of Effective Change Agents. They did not rank change agents by position, high to low, but emphasized five important traits all change agents must possess, and in this order:  Flexibility, Diversified Knowledge, Priority and Results Focus, Ownership and Responsibility, and Effective Listening Skills.

Each trait requires three components that I address in my motivational change management keynote addresses:  the vision to understand why it is important, the mindset to make it happen, and the daily grit to overcome any obstacles that may prevent change from happening.

For example, as part of an acquisition an organization may need to implement a new company-wide software system. An employee committed to change will have the vision to see why it is important to diversify and expand knowledge, the determination to excel at understanding the system’s complexities, and the grit to learn and study every day.

Becoming Invaluable

Being a change agent requires making yourself invaluable. In times of transition, executive leaders will actively seek out employees who embrace change. Indeed, the Robert Half management consulting firm stresses the following point in their tips for change success:

“Involve employees as soon as goals are set. Ask their opinions and get their input on how the business runs today and what they believe should be changed.”

Executive leaders want those on their team who are determined to help rather than hinder, and who are willing to go the extra mile to make change successful and to be flexible in their thinking. Change is not always easy but change agents will always be recognized as those who made it happen. Be determined to make it happen.

Contact Scott Burrows, Motivational Speaker for Change Agents and Change in Organizations through this website or call us at: (520) 548-1169

 

The Challenge of Buggy-Whips, Slide Rules, VCRs, and Caramel Macchiatos

 

In delivering motivational keynotes on adapting, reinventing, and the flexibility needed in the modern organization, it is important to illustrate what happens when companies fail to change. Unless a business – or industry – is determined to change, it may cling to an old vision that is not only counterproductive to growth, but hopeless in offering a solution.

To illustrate my point, a great example is a publicly-traded company (I won’t tell you its name until the end of this post) that only 16 years ago had $5 billion in sales, more than 9,000 stores and 60,000 employees. Their stock certificates can now be used as wallpaper. At nearly the same time, a forward-looking organization seeing the incredible change the internet was about to bring launched its service. The company, having adapted to what was the new internet market, is currently worth about $150 billion.

Change is a Mindset, Not a Fear

It was the ancient Greek philosopher Socrates who observed something that could apply to any keynote speech on adapting, reinventing, and being flexible in today’s business world: “The secret of change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old, but building the new.”

Change is a mindset, not a fear.

It was the “Chicken Man,” Frank Perdue, who said: “A business that doesn’t change is a business that is going to die.” Prior to Perdue launching what would eventually become a $6 billion company, his competitors were largely non-branded, disjointed companies. Perdue was determined to create a major niche in the industry by advertising and branding his product. They laughed at him. It was not long before the Perdue brand was asked for by name.

Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz wrote: “Grow with discipline. Balance intuition with rigor. Innovate around the core…make the tough choices…be decisive in times of crisis. Be nimble. Find truth in trials and lessons in mistakes. Be responsible for what you see, hear, and do. Believe.”

In other words, be adaptable and be flexible. You may fall down, but there is wisdom that naturally comes from the lessons that have been learned from falling. You must develop the grit to get back up if you fail. Change is not easy. Despite the incredible success of Starbucks or Amazon for that matter, there were points in their growth when they could have failed. They developed strategic plans, they overcame “disagreements” within their ranks, and they both established a pattern of “do as I do, not as I say.” There was no task that Howard Schultz preached that he did not do himself.

Another famous example is one of the original officers of Costco, James (Jim) Sinegal. Sinegal routinely dropped into stores around the world, often unannounced, and helped bag orders if he noticed customers waiting too long in a line. The customers never suspected who he was. He never took a salary of more than $350,000 annually.

Sinegal, Schultz and Perdue wanted to be close to the action and to observe any changes to their industry first-hand to quickly adapt and reinvent their operations. They worked with managers, vendors, distributors and employees to constantly learn and to explore new options and avenues.

This was something that the executives at Blockbuster never cared to do. When Netflix launched in 2007, Blockbuster, much like old buggy-whip manufacturers, failed to heed what they needed to do to adapt. They lacked the mindset and the determination to change. They never recovered.

Contact Scott Burrows, Motivational Keynote and Breakout Speaker on Adapting, Reinventing and Flexibility through this website or call us at: (520) 548-1169

 

Have the Determination to Make Your Workplace Diverse

 

As an inspirational speaker on Diversity & Inclusion, I often hear the sentiment “I wish our organization would be more inclusive, but progress has been slow – and I’m a nobody.”

As a quadriplegic, I admire the capabilities and understand the dilemma of those who are physically challenged and cannot get hired. I am also well aware of the under-representation of women, minorities and the LGBTQ communities in the workplace. Things are finally beginning to change due to a realization that inclusive workplaces are healthier workplaces.

Quality Logic, a software development organization, published an article in October 2018 on diversity in their industry.

They pointed out that “one of the biggest things stopping managers from implementing diversity is the fear that introducing people who ‘are different’ and ‘don’t understand’ each other will hamper productivity.”

In fact, the opposite appears to be true. According to a Forbes article, “racially diverse teams outperform non-diverse ones by 35%.”

Some may call this outperformance a shared sense of social justice, but as someone deeply interested in diversity and inclusion I feel that the more life experiences diverse teams bring to the workplace, the more creative and dynamic the result.

The employment research firm Glassdoor found that 67 percent of job seekers want to be a part of a more diverse team and 57 percent want a commitment to diversity to be a high priority.

Interestingly, Glassdoor found that of those surveyed, 45 percent felt it was the hiring managers, not the CEO, who needed to step up and be determined to hire more minority candidates.

Time for a New Vision?

In April 2019, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) offered an article entitled “The Biggest Reason Companies Avoid Hiring Diversity? 41% Say They’re ‘Too Busy.’” Can this be true at face value?

SHRM felt that the 41 percent stat “reveals just how small of a priority diversity hiring is. If managers want anything to get done about the lack of diversity on their teams, they’ll need to start fitting it into their schedule.”

Could it be that many hiring managers have an inherent fear of minority hiring? It would appear so. The National Bureau of Economic Research found, “When reviewing resumes, specifically looking at just the name, those associated with Caucasian descent received 50% more callbacks than those associated with African American descent, regardless of the industry.”

Hiring fears over inclusion don’t just stop and start with minorities. A 2017 study by Rutgers University involved sending out fictitious job applications of almost 6,000 positions to hiring managers of accounting firms. About 67 percent of those applications stated disabilities such as spinal cord injuries in the cover letters. The fictitious applicants stating disabilities received 26 percent fewer responses from hiring managers.

As someone who is often wheelchair-bound I am fearful as well as thankful. Thankful for the business opportunities I’ve had to excel in the insurance and financial services arena as well as my current profession as a motivational business speaker.

But I am fearful as well. How many outstanding applicants with spinal injuries have been passed over not for lack of credentials, but caution over how well they might fit into the organization?

How many tremendous African American, Latino or other minority candidates have been turned away, not to mention highly qualified women or those of different sexual orientations?

Your employees are encouraging you to have the determination to make workplaces more diverse. They want you to succeed in that mission. We must rise above our worries to understand that inclusion and diversity are the keys to stronger, more profitable and more dynamic organizations.

 

Contact Scott Burrows, Diversity & Inclusion Motivational Speaker through this website or call us at: (520) 548-1169

 

We Talk About Change Management, but What Does it Really Mean?

 

As I deliver so many motivational keynotes on Change Management, a question I am frequently asked is “What does change management really mean?” It is not so naïve a question. There are many meanings and many answers. For example, to a company undergoing a merger, change management to the CFO is often not the same thing as it is to the CIO or to the Vice President of Manufacturing.

Bart Perkins, writing for CIO’s online magazine (April 12, 2018) had several observations important to share on the topic of defining change management.

His observations about those in IT can apply to most any employee in any department:

“Many people view their value to the organization as being a good technical architect, programmer, or security specialist. When asked to take on a different role, they may become very uncomfortable…once they are no longer rewarded for the skills that made them successful, employees may question their purpose.”

If you would like, think of a marketing manager, quality assurance specialist or an accountant having to take on new roles and working with new people. When they are forced to leave their comfort zones, what will happen to the role they worked so hard to establish?

Another observation Perkins made on change management was, “Individuals must be willing to examine new information and adopt new behaviors and approaches. Since most people prefer the status quo, this can be difficult.”

Inertia

What is it about change management that is such a difficult process? As an inspirational speaker on the topic, I think I can sum it up in one word: inertia.

Many organizations undergoing a transformation quickly discover that prior to making changes, their employees are locked into a cycle of indifference, disengagement and fear. The fear, incidentally, often stems from an understanding that if employees were previously motivated to make changes at their initiative, they were often penalized for doing so. They may not have started out that way, they may have at one time been eager to make a difference, but over time they felt their initial motivation to contribute and participate was futile.

Change management, in all of its phases, requires employees to re-ignite and re-energize their vision. It is not so easy a task. In fact, it is a two-way street.

Overcoming inertia requires determination not only from individual employees but from the corporate or organizational entity itself. The organization that is undergoing change or has undergone change must reach out to their most valuable asset, their employees, to help. The employees must know that they are the difference; they are the change agents.

Neither is change management solely about organizational charts or the implementation of new technologies. It is personal. This personal investment does not happen by accident; it takes an individual vision on the part of the employee, the determination to make that vision happen, and the grit to work at it every day.

Overcoming inertia is the opposite of settling for so-so; it is the mindset of never being content with “good enough.” I know from both personal and business experience that there will be days when the change that is required will be difficult. I also know that overcoming inertia and never settling for apathy causes people and their organizations to soar. That is the true essence of where change management can take us.

 

Contact Scott Burrows, Inspirational Keynote Speaker on Change Management today, through this website or call us at: (520) 548-1169

 

The Toll of the Takeover: Change Your Mindset

 

In delivering my motivational addresses on Change Management, I am often asked about the toll that mergers and takeovers have on the employees of the organization.

I view mergers and takeovers as paralleling the experiences I encountered after my two accidents. I went from being a competitive martial artist and Division I football player to a quadriplegic; from physically in-control of myself to fighting for my life in a hospital bed. During my extensive rehab, I had to find a new mindset. It led me to inspiring employees undergoing change in their organizations to overcoming the hardship they face in losing the familiar and the predictable.

The Fear is Real

In his 1987 book, The Employee Guide to Mergers and Acquisitions, Dr. Price Pritchett identified the fears of employees when they realize their companies are about to undergo takeovers. The fears include: uncertainty, ambiguity, mistrust, and self-preservation. During the takeover period employees are on-edge; they tend to not believe anything related to them by managements; and many keep low profiles, preferring to stay hidden and stay behind the scenes. I realized these behaviors were very similar to the patient who blames the world for their troubles, does not follow doctor’s orders for strength and conditioning, and essentially gives up.

There are much better ways to change the negative mindset when a merger or takeover is about to unfold. In January 2019, The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine presented a paper entitled, “Dealing with the Emotional Impact of a Merger or Acquisition.” Not surprising, three emotions set in throughout the organization: shock and numbness, suffering (as the full impact sets in), and what is called “resolution,” or as I like to call it, the “what are you going to do about it?” stage. After my initial diagnosis, I was first in shock, then I realized what the outcome could be and finally, what could I do to change my mindset?

While the fear is real, the ultimate outcome is up to every employee of the organization to either see themselves as “sick” or to overcome the adversity of change and accept that the best change agent is you. In accepting the fact that the takeover or merger is happening, there is the choice to blame anyone and everything on the takeover or to accept the situation and handle it as you would any growth experience.

It Comes Down to Positive Mindset

The organization Total Wellness Health outlined mindset-changing attitudes whether your organization is undergoing a takeover or merger or other sweeping changes. Among the most important coping skills to help employees manage change are using positive messaging – be optimistic about the future; develop positive relationships, especially with your new co-workers; be upbeat, even if others wallow in negativity; and always communicate with others in a positive way.

In managing change we each have a choice. Many years ago, while lying in a hospital bed, I was determined to have an optimistic vision of wellness and I worked hard toward that goal. A positive mindset is contagious and affects everyone around you. The best way to manage change is to be a positive change agent.

Contact Scott Burrows, Change Management Mergers/Takeover Motivational Speaker, through this website or call us at: (520) 548-1169