Friday, August 16, 2019

Do you have what you need to meet your goals today?

We have been using the technique called Lean Daily Management (LDM) for over six years. It has been a great way to create a company of focused problem solvers and to narrow the gap between the “front office” and the “front line.” At the end of every visit to an LDM board, the executives ask those who have just presented, “do you have everything you need to meet your goals today?”

We ask this question because we want to know if anything is making it hard for us to deliver the kind of care that we want for our own loved ones. If something is missing or broken, we want to address it right away. The Senior Team (the vice presidents and me) don’t deliver care. Our role is to thank those who do, to foster problem-solving and care redesign to get us closer to our vision, and to remove barriers to the provision of care. “Do you have everything you need to meet your goals today?” is a way to identify barriers that the local leader has not been able to take care of on his own or by working up the standard chain of command.

At a town hall meeting this week, I was reviewing our core competency of redesigning care with some nurses and nursing technicians. I was reflecting on the first day of LDM, back in 2013, when I learned that their unit had 38 missing medications during the preceding 24 hours. I told them that I felt like crying that day because we were letting them down. So much of their precious time was spent searching for something that should have been there. At the town hall meeting, I was very happy when the nurses told me that we had made their jobs easier after redesigning the medication delivery system. Missing medication is now a rare event on their unit! Over the past six years, we have become much more competent at redesigning care and care delivery systems.

I still believe that we have a lot of work to do to make sure that our people have what they need to meet their goals every day. We are actively working to fill vacancies to make sure that all of our units are fully staffed, and we have enough people to do the job right. I have noticed instances where people wait until LDM to report missing resources or broken processes. If you notice something that isn’t working, report it to your supervisor right away.

What do you think? Do you have what you need to meet your goals today? Please let me know by replying in the comments. 

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