An Application of Three Models to Heal Healthcare
By: Joy W. Goldman RN, MS PCC: CEO SixSEED Partners
Let’s see if this situation sounds familiar to you: You have a senior, C-Suite leader, or high-volume surgeon, or your flagship hospital CEO who is widely perceived as demonstrating obstructionist behavior. In polarity language, they tend to over-leverage the “I” focus: they over-advocate for their organization/ service line/ system entity to get more resources to the detriment of the rest of the system. They are perceived not as team players and are perceived as being an “urban legend” in the systemic fear of their power and intimidation. You may hear the following spoken in hallways or in private zoom chat rooms: “Everyone knows that “he/she” wants total control and you best not mess with him/ her because there will be repercussions!”
When systems perpetuate these urban legends and make up stories around motivations for behavior, everyone suffers and healthy cultures are undermined. There is toxic energy that is spent on workarounds, defensive positioning anticipating a negative outcome, disrespect to the senior leader with many talking behind their back, and a crystal-clear message to everyone witnessing this behavior of: “it’s not safe here.”
The Solution & Invitation:
There are three frameworks we use to help shift these cultures from unhealthy, unsafe and low trust cultures to engaged, supportive, healthy and safe cultures: @theconsciousleadershipgroup ’s “Above and Below the Line;” The Collective Leadership Assessment from the Leadership Circle, and Polarity Thinking—adding both/and thinking to traditional problem-solving thinking. When used recently with a group of nursing and patient care leaders, over a series of several sessions spanning six months, their comments included: “we now call each other for support;” “we are more solution-oriented,” and “we can be vulnerable with each other since we now share a common language.”
Let’s hear from you:
We’d love to hear your perspective on what you and your organizations are doing to shift your cultures from blame and persecutor-victim relationships to healthy, trusting partnerships. Please post your responses on our LinkedIn page or send us an email here.