Change occurs rapidly in the healthcare industry, perhaps more so than any other area. Just consider the vast number of changes that occurred within the past year. The list can overwhelm. That’s why it’s important to master change.
Most of these changes came from external pressures that forced a response. The healthcare industry, as well as your role within it, had no choice but to adapt. But just because it was a necessity, doesn’t mean it was easy.
Most people don’t like change. They fear it, resist it, and oppose it. However, that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t pursue change when needed. Here are three tips to successfully master strategic change within your healthcare practice or organization.
Make Incremental Changes
Though most people prefer to avoid change, they are more apt to accept it when it comes in small doses. Instead of making one large, painful upheaval, master change by making several incremental tweaks over time.
Taking this approach makes an adjustment more palatable to those impacted by it. In fact, staff may begin to accept lesser changes as a normal regular occurrence. They may even begin to feel something’s missing when these tiny tweaks to their work don’t occur.
By making incremental improvements over time, you’ve shown that you can master change and your staff will appreciate it.
Explain the Need for Changes
A big reason why people fear change is that they fear the unknown. That’s why it’s critical to communicate what is happening and why. Catching your staff off guard by throwing an unexpected upheaval at them without warning is disconcerting.
Instead, to master change let them know what’s happening when it will occur, and why it’s necessary. Now that you’ve told them once, tell them again. And again. Most people need to encounter a new concept several times before they can fully comprehend it. Though you may fall short of getting them to embrace it, at least they’ll appreciate the thoughtful way you moved forward. This will go a long way to help them accept the change and not oppose it.
Allow Staff to Have Some Degree of Control Over the Change
A third tip to master change is to look for ways to involve the people impacted by it. Can those who are most affected by the change help plan it? Seek their input as to how it will roll out. Let them offer suggestions on when it will occur. They’ll have insight that you might not be aware of. If possible, let them pick the day of the week or the time of day when the adjustment will occur.
If the change requires training, ask your charges how to best make it happen. This includes the teaching format, length, and schedule. By involving staff in the planning stages, you’ll enjoy a greater buy-in from them and experience a smoother transition.
Be a Master of Change
To master change, whenever possible seek small incremental changes, communicate why it’s needed, and give staff a degree of control over how and when it occurs. Also be sure to include your valued medical call center in your plans. This is critical for two reasons.
First, if your change affects your call center, letting them know beforehand will allow them to best adapt to it and address it with the highest degree of success.
Second, your medical call center may be able to play a key role in the change. Is there more work they can do for you? Could they do their existing work differently to bring about enhanced outcomes? You won’t know until you ask. That’s why it’s important that to master change, you should consider how your call center can be part of the solution.
Learn how medical answering service from MedConnectUSA can help your practice, clinic, or facility better master change. Or get a free quote to discover how affordable their healthcare communication services are. Peter Lyle DeHaan is a freelance writer and call center authority.