Listening to Dr. Jerry Linenger, United States Navy Flight Surgeon and NASA Astronaut (Retired), give a vivid description of “lift-off” while sitting in the Space Shuttle on his way to the International Space Station at last month’s IDN Summit, I pondered the amount of planning that must go into these “little” journeys. When he shared his recollection of a fire on board the ISS during his five-month stay, his advanced planning was a matter of life and death.
Do we have a plan to “lift-off” our organization’s five-year strategy? Do we have the nimbleness and planning in place to handle the fires that arise during our “planned” activities?
I have found over my 40-year career that the most effective leaders are those that not only have a clear mission, vision, and values, but also a clear three- or five-year strategic plan that is shared with the most senior leaders through the entry-level staff within their organizations. These plans not only describe what goals are to be accomplished over a specific period of time, but they also highlight why these goals are important to the overall organization and how are they going to be accomplished.
If you don’t have a strategic plan, I invite you to draft one as soon as possible. Find a day or two out of your busy schedule to remove yourself from all distractions and truly think about what you believe are the most important and impactful accomplishments you and your team should attain over the next three to five years. If you still have a local library, rent a room for a couple of days, shut down your phone and laptop, and truly focus on not only the what, but the why and how you and your team will be successful in bringing the most value to your organization.
Once a draft is completed, I invite you to rent that same room and share with your direct reports. Provide them the insights of your thought process and give them an opportunity to weigh-in and influence not only the wording, but the actual strategic plan. They may bring additional or different thinking that must be considered, but by providing them your initial thoughts, you are providing a framework and clear understanding of your intended priorities and the rationale for those priorities. Once finalized, share with the person or persons you report to, getting his/her input. This step should ensure that your priorities are in line with those of the organization.
Once complete, share your strategic plan with as much of the organization as you are able, including board members, executives, peers and staff. Consider sharing your strategic plan with key stakeholders outside of your organization, such as clients or suppliers. The more individuals that understand what your objectives are, why they are your priorities and how you plan to accomplish them, the more support you will receive and the easier it will be to remain nimble in the face of fires that ignite.
It is obvious that Dr. Linenger survived his five-month stay on board the International Space Station and the fire that broke out during his journey. The years of planning to take this trip paid off in not only surviving five months in space, but also in handling the emergencies that arose while aboard. Are we prepared to be effective in our roles over the next three-five years? I invite you to clear your mind for a day or two and ensure that you are prepared to handle whatever the Healthcare Industry throws your way.
- Vendor Partnerships- My View: 12.18.15
- Reflections from Dave Hunter after 33 years in Healthcare Supply Chain: 12.11.15
- The Dynamics of Supply Chain Success: 11.20.15
- Identifying Innovation: 8.19.15
- Step 1- Intro to Design Thinking: 7.22.15
- Scott: 7.20.15
- Emergencies and Other Untoward Events' Impact on the Supply Chain and the IDN's Bottom Line: 6.24.15
- The Case for Clinical Evidence in Patient Care: 6.11.15
- Keeping Up with Change: 6.10.15
- What Hospitals Expect from Their Vendors: 6.2.15
- Three Steps to Staying Relevant in this New Era of Health Reform and Population Health: 5.29.15
- How FMOLHS Implemented GS1 US Data Standards in their Supply Chain with a Pilot Testing Program and Why You Should Too: 5.29.15
- Disruptive Innovations: 5.18.15
- Physician Engangement: 5.15.15
- The Spirit of Giving: 11.20.12
- Tip of the Week- Taking an Early Lead: 11.6.12
- Enjoy Your Flight: 10.22.12
- Expanding Minds and Changing Worlds: 10.10.12
- Tip of the Week- Bringing It Home: 9.26.12
- Tip of the Week- Top Ten Reasons to Attend the 2012 Fall IDN Summit: 8.14.12
- Communicating Success: 7.31.12
- Tip of the Week- Keeping Tabs and Taking Names: 7.17.12
- Tip of the Week- Political Realitites: 7.3.12
- Tip of the Week- Make the Numbers Work For You: 6.21.12
- Tip of the Week- Patient Driven Decisions: 6.5.12
- Tip of the Week: Opportunities Come From Many Avenues: 5.8.12
- A Time for Heros: 10.11.11
- Keeping that IDN Summit Momentum Going: 9.21.11
- Setting the Stage for a Rise in the Polls: 8.30.11
- Leading Healthcare Systems Find Value in IDN Summit: 8.15.11
- Exceptional Educational Program Awaits at the Fall IDN Summit: 8.10.11
- Have You Asked a Nurse? 7.27.11
- IDN Summit Puts Spotlight on Industry Leaders: 2.15.11
- Record Number of IDNs Register: 1.31.11
- Federation of American Hospitals Prepares for Policy Conference: 1.25.11
- Savings Strategies: 9.7.10
- Supplier Education: 8.18.10
- Are Keynote Speakers Important?: 7.20.10
- Thought Leadership: 6.30.10
- New Post Title: 6.17.10
- Serving Our Community: 6.9.10
- IDN Summit Launches New Site: 6.8.10
- Some Parting Thoughts from Orlando: 5.6.10
- A Stellar Field: 4.9.10
- Speaking of Excellence: 2.25.10
- Some Magic Coming in Orlando: 2.18.10
- A New Outlook: 1.19.10