We engaged H+A 18 months ago to transform our legacy physician compensation model from a volume only model to a volume and value blend. This was no small task, we had 50 practicing physicians and administrators involved in the collaborative work session and over 1500 physicians were impacted by the changes. The facilitators’ abilities to engage, push, challenge and stay on task allowed us to focus on the main issues and develop a new model that positions us for the future. I highly recommend Hufano + Associates.
Initially, I thought, what a waste of time! After serving as a sponsor and spending 3 days, I left a believer! There is a method behind the madness of a Collaborative Work Session. It comes out as you do the work. Private physicians who were leaders came because they wanted the hospital system to succeed, grow and flourish. Two years after the CWS, we enjoyed great success!
The physicians brought their perspective about how to run things better. We had never had all the perspectives in the room together. We learned from each other’s perspectives and gained respect for each other.
Physicians learned a lot about how a business has to be run successfully. They learned about organizations and groups. Physicians are Don Quixotes—individualists; it is how we are trained. If you don’t learn how to operate as a group, you cannot be successful.
I will start by saying, as a physician, I was very skeptical and resistant to both the time commitment and the value equation of a CWS. Most docs do not go for the group sitting around singing Kumbaya, holding hands and visioning things—I am one of those! But we also don’t understand strategy well—we are tactical and when we are asked to be involved in strategy planning, the length of time it usually takes to put the plan together and then act on it is also an endeavor we don’t have much patience for. Having said all that and not knowing what a CWS was except it was to set strategy in a short amount of time, I must say I was impressed that the methodology works.
The value equation for me was that when we walked out of there after those long three days, we had a plan that would cover the next three to five years—it was written down, had been discussed and debated, had all stakeholders involved and ready for the tactical part of carrying it out.
First, it was merging two health care systems that had competed across the street from each other for a century in a rivalry that made Macy’s and Gimble’s look like child’s play. Next, it was the challenge of simultaneously creating a multi-year strategic plan and a first time Master Facility Plan. Each time we used a three-day Collaborative Work Session and each time we achieved a roaring success. Ten years later, the merger stands as one of the largest and most successful health care systems in the state and the Master Facility Plan was completed...including a capital campaign that exceeded its $30 million goal by 20%.