Medical Staff Leadership & Team Development

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June 14, 2013

Within the scope of development are the unique needs of individual physicians and the medical staff as a whole. For those reading this section you are likely to know the nature of many challenges facing healthcare organizations and physicians.

Some conversations I have had in the last few years:

  • Individual physician disputes (physician-physician/physician-hospital);
  • Group squabbles and turf issues including credentialing;
  • Hospital-physician problem diagnosis and solutions;
  • Understanding and appreciation of business issues (on both sides);
  • Financial challenges;
  • Hospital-physician competition;
  • Reduction in variation/quality issues;
  • Medical staff leadership and education;
  • Medical staff recruitment, employment, acquisition, divestiture;
  • Inappropriate physician behavior;
  • Medical staff bylaws;
  • Medical staff partnership and associate problems;
  • Medical staff – board relations;
  • Medical teamwork and team development; and
  • Crisis management.

Every healthcare organization faces a series of these encapsulated challenges as well as the need to provide ongoing development of the medical staff leadership pipeline. Many organizations are burning out the few good people who are willing to do good work for the benefit of all, and if you go to the same well too often, you will find your supply inadequate for your needs.

Just as organizations must ensure the right leadership strategy to support the business strategy, medical staff leadership development must be a part. Whether you determine the time is right for a full-scale medical staff development academy or not, leaders should be clear that your existing initiatives are placing you to adapt quickly to changes in the future. I’m not one to tell you if your goals and tactics are correct before getting to know you, but I can say that if you are not in the forefront in working with your your physicians to craft the very best relationship and help them learn as much as you can about your common environment then I think you should revisit the issue. All roads in healthcare will be traveled hand-in-hand with physicians, if not led by them, and  leaders owe it to the organization to equip their physicians to lead with clarity and understanding.