Joy W. Goldman RN, MS PCC: CEO SixSEED Partners
Introduction: Case for Change
- “Joy: (as told by a hospital CEO) “I am having a spiritual crisis. I have dedicated my life to this work and I am exhausted. I am getting emails from our system CEO at all hours of the night and weekends. And when are our senior meetings? Mondays.. so if we want to take a long weekend, we have to wrestle with missing those meetings or attending them on our time off.”
- From a dear friend: “My son (nurse in ICU) called me yesterday and told me he lost another patient. He commented that this is a daily occurrence and he sent me this very poignant video illustrating the journey of his fellow nurses and care-providers. He doesn’t feel that he can talk to anyone for fear they will think him “fragile” and unsafe.
- From a senior leader whose position was eliminated: “I was informed via a 10- minute zoom call that my position was eliminated and that I would be cut off from all communications as of that moment. I could only go to my office to clean out my belongings with an escort. I’ve worked for the organization for over twenty years and this is how I’m treated. I understand the need to re-organize but why wouldn’t they allow me to transition my projects to others?”
The stories above are direct quotes from clients and/or friends. As we reach the one- year mark for Covid-19 lockdowns and the now 500,000 deaths in the United States, more and more of these stories are surfacing. SixSEED Partners is committed to providing integrated solutions to heal healthcare and there is no greater time of need than right now.
Crisis in the Making: Grief, Trauma and Vicarious Trauma:
McKinsey & Company, in a December 2020 publication: “Grief, loss burnout: Talking about complex feelings at work” discuss the unparalleled levels of exhaustion and loss that have become “routine” for healthcare workers. Provider burnout was a concern before the pandemic- it is only magnified now in the constantly “on stage” demands of taking care of patients and trying to recoup financial losses due to fewer elective surgeries. The authors of “Healthcare Coaching Through Crisis and Trauma” (February 2021), published through Harvard’s Institute of Coaching, describe the experiences as passing even “severe burnout,” into the realm of trauma, vicarious trauma, and moral injury.” How are we challenging ourselves to slow down enough to put resources to this significant need? In many ways, we are reminded of our nation’s tension of leveraging individualism (each person responsible for their status/ wellbeing) with communal good (how are we caring for each other).
The Leadership Ecosystem Capacity Approach to Resilience and Restoration:
SixSEED Partners asserts that we each have a role in better leveraging caring for the workforce as we strive to keep our organizations afloat. Without workers, we have no margin. What’s in our control to do?
Please see the polarity map pasted below for some ideas of action steps and early warning signs to address this tension.
SixSEED Partners recently partnered with an academic medical center to offer a polarity thinking workshop to sixteen internal medicine faculty. These physicians were learning about leading change in patient quality and safety and we chose to help them expand their thinking to support their leading in complex and unpredictable environments. They voiced appreciation for the safe space where they got to share with their colleagues and learn that the challenges they were dealing with were not unique to them. They were also able to acknowledge that they needed to assume individual responsibility for self -advocacy and health as they worked so hard at taking care of others- whether that was at work or at home.
Let’s hear from you;