May 13, 2005

Evaluation, reward programs outlined

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Evaluation, reward programs outlined

Diane Boyd, R.N., took part in last week’s elevate leadership development session.
photo by Dana Johnson

Diane Boyd, R.N., took part in last week’s elevate leadership development session.
photo by Dana Johnson

A new job evaluation process just for leaders and supervisors, a long-awaited employee reward and recognition program, and a set of “credo behaviors” describing the desired day-to-day work conduct of staff and faculty were all introduced in detail at the second installment of the Vanderbilt Medical Center Leadership Development Institute, May 4 and 5 at the Curb Event Center at Belmont University.

The series of quarterly leadership conferences is part of elevate, the wide-ranging VUMC improvement effort that started last November.

Some 700 leaders attended one the daylong sessions; the same program was repeated both days but many of the presenters changed from the first day to the second. Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs Harry R. Jacobson, M.D., greeted the assembly on both days and outlined the meeting agenda.

“In my nearly 20 years at Vanderbilt, I've never felt as enthused about what is to come as I am right now,” Jacobson told the group. “For Vanderbilt to achieve what we all know it can, we need to renew our commitment to our patients. We not only need to give them the best medical care possible, we need to give them the best of ourselves — our caring, our concern and our willingness to help. The elevate journey is all about that reconnection.”

Jacobson introduced managers who gave brief testimonials about the benefits of employee rounding, which is a new VUMC management practice intended to bring leaders and supervisors into more frequent direct contact with staff and faculty throughout their areas.

It was announced that, in order to encourage employee satisfaction, VUMC is introducing new funds and manager training to help departments recognize and reward exceptional employee service. Managers may give thank you notes and/or gift certificates, from $25 to $200, good for merchandise and services from a variety of local and online merchants. Managers were asked to take the training and to talk with staff about reward and recognition before the July 1 start of the program.

VUMC goals under elevate for fiscal year 2006 were introduced by Executive Vice President Norman B. Urmy and Vanderbilt Medical Group Chief Operating Officer David R. Posch. The goals fall into five categories — people, service, quality, growth and financial results. All goals for the institution are expressed in numbers and are intended to cascade down into every cranny of the Medical Center as work-group goals.

Here are some examples of the 2006 institutional goals:

• reduce job turnover by 10 percent;

• raise overall service satisfaction by five points;

• perform above the 50th percentile in all publicly reported clinical quality measures;

• increase sponsored research dollars by 10 percent.

Beginning in July, about 300 leaders will begin to be evaluated, and eventually compensated, based on progress toward achieving the goals. Managers will receive monthly report cards about goal achievement and will use 90-day plans to focus their work. Supervisors were asked to present an overview of the new leadership evaluation process to staff in their areas within the next few months.

The Medical Center's new day-to-day work standards, or “credo behaviors,” were developed over several months of small-group discussions involving roughly 600 of the top-performing and most respected members of the staff and faculty. Arranged under six headings, the 28 standards are intended to be clear and specific: “I will take seriously any concern (real, perceived, big or small) presented by a patient, family member, visitor or colleague;” “I will clean up litter, debris and spills within my facility promptly or notify the best resource;” “I will not criticize a colleague, department or the Medical Center to a patient, family member or visitor,” and so on.

Supervisors were asked to present an overview of the standards to staff in their areas by the end of May.

The Standards of Behavior/Service Recovery Team is now turning its attention to developing ways to support accountability for adherence to the standards across VUMC.

The next VUMC Leadership Development Institute is schedule for Aug. 17/18.