When Marijo Snyder, M.D., was given the opportunity to overhaul Bronson Healthcare’s Physician Leadership Academy, she started by reaching out to physicians to find out what they most wanted to learn about, and how to structure the training to fit in their busy schedules. She also partnered with Bronson’s Center for Learning and its director, Cheryl Throgmorton, for help with the design of the program and curriculum development. They were pleased to discover that physicians were interested not just in standard leadership competencies such as change management, teamwork, and inter- and intrapersonal effectiveness, but also in patient communication, personal resiliency, and business acumen skills. Together they completely overhauled the curriculum, and they rescheduled the training sessions from the afternoon to the evening (over dinner) to make it easier for physicians to attend all of the curriculum sessions.
In addition to didactic training, participants are encouraged to engage in personal projects that demonstrate their knowledge and help pass skills along to their peers. Five physicians decided to make two videos to illustrate what they learned about the right – and wrong – ways to communicate effectively with patients and family members:
We love these videos for a number of reasons. First, it’s clear that these physicians understand the difference between clear, patient-focused communication and talking at the patient – including listening skills. Second, they show how important it is to address patients’ emotional concerns as well as their medical needs. And finally, the fact that they chose this topic for their project shows their willingness to help lead a broader experience transformation within their organizations and among their peers.
In the Experience Innovation Network we believe that physician leadership is essential to driving a more humanized healthcare experience. What approaches is your organization employing to foster and support physician leadership in experience?