Pushing Past the Goal Line: Change the Game with Continuous Quality Improvement

November 25, 2014
Denise Hyde and Laura Beck

030920-N-9693M-003We’ve all heard the saying that you should never rest on your laurels. In the culture change world, change, focusing on driving additional change, and finding ways to build on those changes is a way of life. Sometimes, you just want to catch your breath and, well, rest on those laurels. As change agents, we know the secret sauce is finding a balance between celebrating our successes along the way and fostering a culture committed to continuous quality improvement.

It all comes down to the power of high engagement and empowered teams. Tired of hearing this yet? We hope not, because, as most of us know, the benefits are exponential. With a stronger participatory culture in place, teams are poised to make performance improvement an ongoing priority.  By empowering team members to identify strengths and build on them, organizations are better equipped to notice what isn’t working and eliminate barriers to person-directed care over time.  Making shared ownership in improvement processes a daily affair develops a powerful sense of shared ownership and an organizational commitment to reach further.

So, how can leaders inspire teams to act with continuous quality improvement in mind? Here are some things to consider:

Teach teams to practice anchoring decisions, choices, and actions in guiding concepts and principles, such as the Ten Principles of The Eden Alternative or the Eden Alternative Domains of Well-Being. If you can’t make the connection to foundational ideas of your choosing, you may need to change direction. Driving change just to meet the expectations of state surveyors or to get a competitive edge probably doesn’t engage people’s hearts and minds for the long-term. Make it meaningful.

Discuss with teams what skills and systems need to be developed to drive a person-directed, continuous quality improvement culture. Do teams know how to do root cause analysis or an affinity diagram to help whittle down your list of the most notable gaps? Are they able to craft an effective action plan? Do they know how to set a SMART goal? The goal is to set up your teams for success.

Brainstorm with your leadership team about what questions you should each be asking on a regular basis to assess how consistently continuous quality improvement is prioritized in the organization. Update and revise this question list often. Check in with each other regarding what you learn from your conversations with other team members. Keep communicating.

Explore with teams how you will hold each other accountable to upholding a continuous quality improvement culture on a daily basis. How will you encourage, support, and challenge each other to strive for more, rather than rest on your laurels? Collaborating, rather than competing with your peers, makes you stronger and moves you closer to your goals faster.

Determine with teams what means you will use to assess your progress and identify barriers to success over time. What tools and resources are needed? How will you make sure they are providing you the data you need to make decisions about future courses of action?

Person-directed quality improvement is a team sport.  Learn more by joining us for “Creating a Continuous Quality Improvement Culture,” on December 16th from 3 to 4 pm ET. This will be the third event in the 4-part webinar series, Person-Directed Performance Improvement.

No comments

Leave a Reply