Case Study: Activating Values and Culture in a Healthcare System

For more than a century, a large health system has been empowering Chicago’s West and Southwest side communities toward healthier lives, by overcoming barriers and providing exceptional health care. They have a focused mission and purpose and are committed to improving the patient outcomes in the communities they service.

This begins with the people who provide patient care as “one team”,  serving their community. This multi-location health system identified five core values they wanted to anchor throughout the organization. They defined these cultural beliefs “Living Our Values.”

The challenge we were asked to address was keeping “Living Our Values” top-of-mind and activating the associated behaviors in all caregivers and leaders. This commitment was met additional organizational challenges. One of these challenges was transition to a new CEO who would be entering the health system at the beginning of the new year. The system needed to develop a strategy for aligning key elements including their culture, values, engagement, a new performance management process and a strategy on how to get leaders at all levels to adopt the expected behaviors.

The Solution

LAK Group designed a culture shaping process with resources and tools to support the activation of the “Living Our Values” culture beliefs and behaviors. The foundation of the solutions was enabling leaders to create new experiences for their caregivers that would drive new beliefs and behaviors that align with the cultural beliefs.

There was a heavy focus placed on how leaders need to “show up” every day to help shape the desired state culture while creating a lasting, positive change in self, teams, and the healthcare system. We created an experiential-based learning framework that created “ah-ha” moments that led to sustainable shifts in behaviors.

The solution included the following elements.

  1. Culture Activation Workshops that addressed all leaders in the healthcare system through a process where they “unfreeze” existing habits and begin the process of personal behavior change to match the needs of “Living Our Values.”
  2. Group coaching sessions to support the activation of behaviors that created experiences for all that aligned with the culture beliefs.
  3. Tools and resources that could be used to anchor behaviors and bring experience to individual teams throughout the healthcare system.
  4. A culture scorecard is administered throughout the process to assess progress and additional development needs for each individual leader.

To ensure sustained success, LAK Group worked with this health system’s leadership team to identify and develop proven reinforcement mechanisms and measures to ensure positive cultural drivers and new leader behaviors are embedded in existing systems and processes.

The Impact

By focusing on creating new experiences for caregivers, leaders have seen a shift in the beliefs and behaviors of throughout the organization. This has resulted in improvements in the following areas.

  • The health system has experienced an 8% reduction in clinical caregiver turnover.
  • Caregiver engagement increases have led to improved patient engagement.
  • Leaders have improved communications and are more transparent and capable of managing effectively through conflict.
  • Clinicians and nursing teams are working more effectively as teams when serving patients.

The health systems continues to identify opportunities for leaders to improve their capability and anchor consistency of the experiences leaders are creating for their teams. LAK Group is an experienced partner to help organizations prepare leaders to excel in challenging times and maintain sustainable growth.