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This happens when an organization experiences too many changes at once, changes too often, or has a history of poor change implementation. This can make people resistant to change and doom projects from the start. Healthcare organizations may not be prepared for the new variables and work that come with any kind of change. Major changes often result in new workflows, changes in leadership and re-defined roles, roadblocks and disruptions, and the need to track long-term progress.
A step-by-step analysis of how the change impacts everything and everyone at your organization is a must. Change is often implemented with a top-down approach, in which leadership decides what needs to change. This often comes with the expectation that everyone at the organization will follow suit once the change is implemented. Although transparency and communication are vital to rolling out change, many falsely believe that because the new solution, process, or culture shift was communicated, employees are on board.
Leaders need to involve all levels of employees and get their feedback, while also selling them on the change. I need members of my team to help me fill in the blanks.
I know what direction I want my team to move in. Effective change takes time. When a change management initiative fails, organizations waste resources and morale suffers. Employees that push back on change management can interfere with the initial momentum and prevent the program from being properly executed and successful.
While resistance to change is inevitable and should be expected, addressing it is key for any change management techniques to work.
Fortunately, a well-thought-out change management model will help your organization roll out change in an effective, clear manner. Change management plans are unique to every organization, but there are still universally applicable steps you can take to maximize success and create an organizational culture.
This model breaks change management down into five steps, which you tailor to fit your organization. This includes:. The ultimate goal of this step is to not only drive awareness but also warm your team members up to the idea of the change. You need to build a desire for the change. How will this change benefit them? How will this change impact their roles? Will this result in improved healthcare delivery? Things move quickly in a healthcare setting. If this change will make tasks shorter or provide relief for short-staffed teams, drive that home.
If the previous step was introducing the product, this is the step where you sell your team on the change. This desire can also create a sense of urgency around the change, making people more excited and willing to drive that change. In order for change to be effective, you need proper training around the new tool, technology, or process. This training also needs to cover how the change will impact roles, reporting, and so on. Knowledge is a vital piece of change management. To ensure your team is learning what they need to for the change to be effective, set goals that your organization can work toward as they operate post-change.
Give your team the time and space to practice the new processes or use the new tools or technology. Monitor their performance and provide feedback and further training. Continue to refer to the goals you set in the previous step and determine if your organization is progressing toward those goals.
Revise your training, goals, and even the implementation process as needed to prevent change fatigue or overwhelming your organization. Lastly, you need to continue reinforcing the change. Make sure to also celebrate any major or short-term wins related to the change, as this will help motivate your team to continue on with the new processes. Ask them how they feel about the changes.
Walk through a few together and talk about it. If it goes well, great, now onto the next skill. Ultimately, if the change is helping your healthcare organization progress toward your mission and better things for your team and patients, consider your change management a success. When you decide to bring in automation to improve your revenue cycle, change management needs to be a crucial part of the overall strategy. Just as I would when I bring in a new team of five people, I need to decide what to do with my existing team after I bring on automation.
A leadership mindshift is required to optimize people operations within RCM once automation is deployed. The answer may lie within the work of several change leaders and theorists. Although theories may seem abstract and impractical for direct healthcare practice, they can be quite helpful for solving common healthcare problems. Lewin was an early change scholar who proposed a three-step process for ensuring successful change .
All change initiatives, no matter how big or small, unfold in three major stages: pre-change, change, and post-change. Within those stages, healthcare providers working as change agents or change champions should select actions that match change theories. One of the most critical aspects of pre-change planning is involving key stakeholders in problem identification, goal setting, and action planning . Involving stakeholders in change planning increases staff buy-in.
These stakeholders should include staff from all shifts, including nights and weekends, to create peer change champions for all shifts . During pre-change planning, change agents should assess their departmental staff to determine which staff belong to each category.
Rogers described the different categories of staff as innovators, early adopters, early majority, late majority, and laggards . He further qualified those change acceptance categories with the following descriptions:. Most departmental staff will likely belong to the early or late majority. Change agents should focus their initial education efforts on Innovator and Early Adopter staff. Early adopters are often the most pivotal change champions that persuade early and late majority staff to embrace change efforts .
A force field analysis involves a review of change facilitators and barriers at work in the department. Change leaders should work to reduce change barriers through open communication and education while also aiming to strengthen change facilitators through staff recognition and various incentives. One of the biggest mistakes a change leader can make during the midst of change implementation is failing to validate that staff members are performing new processes as planned.
Ongoing leader engagement throughout change execution will increase the chances of success . Staff resistance remains common during this stage. Change leaders may find it helpful to conduct another Force Field Analysis during this changing phase to ensure no new barriers have emerged . Further strengthening of change facilitators through staff engagement, recognition, and sharing of short-term wins will help maintain momentum.
Staff may require additional on-the-spot training to overcome knowledge deficits as the change process continues.
Finally, leaders must continue to monitor progress toward goals using information like patient satisfaction, staff satisfaction, fall rates, and chart audits . Change agents can redefine their relationship with the staff to take on a less active role in the change maintenance process. However, once the change leader begins to release control over the change process, staff members may slowly revert to old, negative behaviors.
Change managers should celebrate wins with staff while continuing to share evidence of success in staff meetings or with departmental communication boards .
Change is inevitable, yet slow to accomplish. While change theories can help provide best practices for change leadership and implementation, their use cannot guarantee success. The process of change is vulnerable to many internal and external influences. Using change champions from all shifts, force field analyses, and regular supportive communication can help increase the chances of success .
Knowing how each departmental staff member will likely respond to change based on the diffusion of innovation phases can also indicate the types of conversations leaders should have with staff to shift departmental processes. You are not required to obtain permission to distribute this article, provided that you credit the author and journal. Turn recording back on. Help Accessibility Careers. StatPearls [Internet]. Search term. Change Management Jennifer M. Affiliations 1 McNeese State University.
Confirmation staff recognize the value and benefits of the change and continue to use changed processes. Issues of Concern All change initiatives, no matter how big or small, unfold in three major stages: pre-change, change, and post-change. He further qualified those change acceptance categories with the following descriptions: Innovator: passionate about change and technology; frequently suggest new ideas for departmental change. Early majority: Prefer the status quo; willing to follow early adopters when notified of upcoming changes.
Late majority: Skeptical of change but will eventually accept the change once the majority has accepted; susceptible to increased departmental social pressure. Laggard: High levels of skepticism; openly resist change . Clinical Significance Change is inevitable, yet slow to accomplish.