It’s never too soon to think about growing the next generation of leaders if you’re in a specialty provider organization. In our recent national survey, Trends In Specialty Health & Human Services Executive Compensation & Retention: The OPEN MINDS 2019 Survey, about 25% of c-suite executives said they were planning on leaving in the next five years and another 25% were thinking about it.
Building the future leadership team was the focus of the session, Building The Next Generation Of Leaders: How To Develop The Leadership Team You Need For Success, at The 2019 OPEN MINDS Executive Leadership Retreat. The session featured Elizabeth Carey, President and Chief Executive Officer, Starr Commonwealth; John Sheehan, MBA, FACHE, President and Chief Executive Officer, Harbor Behavioral Health; and Vicki Daniel, MBA, Patient Experience Director, Wellspan Philhaven.
These executives, collectively, spoke to three keys for building the next generation of leaders—using personality profiles to identify candidates; not making a big leap all at once; and thinking creatively about staff.
Use personality profiles, but don’t stick to them—All three organizations use the DISC profile to help understand leadership and personality styles. This has improved their understanding of how their team members communicate and solve problems.
Ms. Daniel explained that they started by using the DISC profile with senior leadership staff. It was so successful that they used it with middle managers and provided a one-day training to middle managers on the profile. Middle managers are now beginning to use the profile with their staff as well. Ms. Carey explained that they assign everyone a bird based on their DISC profile that sits on their desk to help facilitate conservations. All three also cautioned that while the profiles are useful, most people fit multiple buckets and it’s important not to develop pre-conceived notions about preferences versus future capabilities.
Don’t take the big leap all at once—For many executives, one of the biggest challenges is transitioning clinical staff to administrative management roles. These roles often require different skill sets and not everyone is suited for both.
Ms. Carey explained that her organization addresses this issue by exposing staff to the administrative side of the business before offering them an administrative role. Clinical staff are invited to sit on the development of business plans and other administrative functions for the service line they work in. This allows staff to see if they like these functions and will self-select. Mr. Sheehan noted that you can’t just expect people to glide into these roles. It requires a lot of coaching, training, and opportunities. He also noted that it sometimes means having the tough conversations with people about taking on a different role if it doesn’t work out.
Think creatively about staff—Attracting and retaining talent doesn’t mean slotting them in a specific role or career path. Often, you will have talented people who grow out of their role or realize it isn’t really right for them. If you think those individuals have skills and attributes that are valuable to the organization, it may be worth moving them to a different role or creating a role that fits their skillsets.
Mr. Sheehan noted that it may be worth investing in non-traditional staff and remote staff. His organization started to provide telepsychiatry and their child psychiatrist is based in Texas. He says without her skill and expertise and being flexible in what it means to be a staff member, they could not be as successful as they are today.
For more on building the next generation of leaders, check out these resources from The OPEN MINDS Industry Library:
- How Do You Engage Employees & Improve Performance?
- Managing Your Team To ‘Tech Savvy’
- What You Wish You Knew About Succession Planning
- Staff Not Performing? What Does That Mean?
- The Keys To Growing Millennial Leaders
- From Clinician To Manager—Rethinking Best Practice
- Developing Female Leaders In Your Organization
- 4 Ways To Retain & Grow Millennial Employees
- Five Strategies For Retaining Your Workforce
- Three Recruiting Best Practices For A Competitive Market — Advice From Executives Who Have Been There
And for even more, join us at The 2019 OPEN MINDS Performance Management Institute in Clearwater, Florida on February 13 for the session, “Workforce Innovation In A Complicated Market: Using Technology To Augment Staff & Increase Clinical Effectiveness” featuring James Stewart, President & CEO, Grafton Integrated Health Network.