What is Our "Case" for Physician Leadership

The “solo and silo” mindset is obsolete.

The traditional, autonomous physician culture is a barrier to physician integration and new ways of working toward quality and cost-containment. The only way to improve the way health care is delivered is to invest in changing physician culture from the "solo and silo" mindset to teamwork, shared decision-making, and open communication. 

Physicians aren’t trained to lead healthcare change.

Without physician leaders at the table, change is driven by non-medical decision-makers with solutions that may lack critical input. Physicians can best foresee the clinical impact of new policies and protocols and know how to "cut the fat" without losing clinical muscle.

Lack of physician cooperation is costly.

Integration alone is not culture change. Simply employing physicians doesn't change the way they're trained to think and act independently, yet physician opposition to change is costly. It takes only one or two physicians who don't buy in to strategic plans to make them fail.

There’s an old joke in leadership circles: We don’t have a problem with leadership; we have a problem with followership. Unfortunately, a lot of doctors don’t get the joke.

Great managers aren’t necessarily great leaders.

Leadership goes beyond management and MBA skills, as many hospitals have learned. Managers fix problems – often a quick fix, often within their own clinical units. Leaders create sustainable change – with proactive thinking, a broad vision of the organization as a whole, and the interpersonal skills to inspire others toward new goals.

The medical staff model is unique.

The financial, ethical, and clinical issues facing health care are unique, so leadership training designed for other industries falls short. Physician leaders bring a deep respect and understanding of the traditional medical staff model – and how it impacts health care today.

Physicians drive the culture of health care.

Starbucks, Microsoft, and other Fortune 500 companies invest in corporate culture because they know the critical role it plays in success. Developing physician leaders helps change health care from the chaos of competing "fiefdoms" to a culture of cooperative interests.

Cost Containment.

Whatever form healthcare change may take on a national level, the future for hospitals is clear: the only way to maintain quality while thriving is to eliminate waste, redundancy, and variation. Whether it's called capitation, bundled services, or any other name, cost-containment drives health care today, with physicians and administrators having to work together, across the silos of health care, to rethink and retool systems and protocols while maintaining quality.

Physician burnout is a huge issue:  Over 10% of 12,000 primary care physicians recently surveyed planned to leave health care within one to three years.

Physician behavior is what makes the difference in profitability in hospitals. How is the physician staff communicating with other departments and service lines? How is each doctor utilizing the hospital compared to colleagues? How many nurses have left a given unit due to dissatisfaction with physician interactions?

Physician leadership directly addresses these issues, while not alienating the physicians a hospital depends on for high-quality growth.

Hospitals and physician groups need effective leaders with the vision to see and integrate the needs of both sides of the table. For physicians and hospitals to survive the healthcare crisis, they need to enter into a new way of thinking. Physicians are ideally positioned to lead this new era of communication and cooperation into the future.

Who Do We Work With at The Center for Physician Leadership?

We work with groups / teams of physicians, including:

  • Administrative leadership – CMO, C-Suite Executives
  • Medical staff leadership – Chief of Staff, Directors, Dept. Chiefs
  • Front-line physician leaders / team leaders within the clinical environment

What Are Our Services?

We offer four core services:
  • Educational Workshops on Physician Leadership
  • Customized On-Site Physician Leadership Training Program
  • Tailored Individual Coaching for Physician Leaders
  • Organizational Consulting Services