Read any business book about how great businesses made it to the top and you’ll find that the greatest success stories begin with a solid plan followed by careful, thoughtful execution. The start of a new year always brings high hopes for achieving successes big and small. So that makes today the best time to lay out a solid plan for achieving patient experience and service excellence goals.
Unfortunately, I don’t always see adequate planning and methodical execution when it comes to patient experience teams. What I see most often is a “Ready. Fire. Aim!… Ooops.” In other words, I see lots of efforts (tactics) that are executed in isolation of a cohesive plan. The results are often that the team or individual leading the effort gets burned out and develops a reputation for hawking “flavor of the month” tactics.
Our work with organizations starts with helping them to lay out a work plan that is tied to core strategies and links to the mission, vision, and values. We have found that success lies in hand with picking the right team members, gaining support from senior leaders, and executing with consistency and perseverance even in the face of competing priorities. Strategy definition must be done in context of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats which requires an assessment. Then the final direction and decisions require allocation of resources. Sounds pretty straight forward right?
But you’d be surprised at how many times patient experience champions fumble in planning and execution. I’ve seen it so often that I’ve created some surefire tools to help service excellence teams and patient experience champions get on track and stay there.
Now that the holidays are behind us, it’s a great time to lay out the plan for making 2014 the year of the patient experience. Let’s take a hint from Edison who said, “Good fortune is what happens when opportunity meets with planning.”