The Science Journal of the American Association for Respiratory Care

2009 OPEN FORUM Abstracts

TEAMBUILDING AS A CHANGE MANAGEMENT ACTIVITY IN RESPIRATORY CARE

Douglas Orens, Robert L. Chatburn, James K. Stoller; Respiratory Therapy, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland Heights, OH

BACKGROUND: Teamwork promotes enhanced outcomes in various businesses. In healthcare, organizational “silos” (e.g., departments not collaborating) can hinder teamwork. This study describes an intervention that fostered teamwork among 4 separate departments of respiratory care (RC) within a single hospital. METHODS:We conducted a situational analysis to identify organizational goals. Then we designed an intervention to create an RC scorecard. The metrics were defined collaboratively using a business review process in meetings with the 4 groups to define relevant outcomes in the categories of: Quality/Innovation, Service, Productivity, and Employee Engagement. Meetings were held for 7 weeks using facilitators from the hospital’s quality improvement group. The employee engagement metric was developed by surveying the staff, asking which of the 12 Gallup Organization Employee Engagement questions were most relevant. Once selected, the staff was again surveyed to assess satisfaction on the 4 items. RESULTS: The situational analysis showed a primary strength was the availability of facilitators. The major weakness was the task of reversing the mindset of silos in all groups. The major opportunity was fostering teamwork and buy-in of the 4 RC groups. A major threat was the time commitment to collect and report the metrics. The goals for improvement were modeled on the features of a change┬ľavid RC department (Respir Care 2008; 53:871- 884). The core metrics developed and baseline values had both monthly and annual targets reported during monthly meetings. Results of the employee engagement survey (30% response rate) identified the 4 most relevant Gallup questions to be: (1) I know what is expected of me at work (2) I have sufficient equipment (3) my opinions count (4) my associates do quality work. Baseline agreement (target 100%) with these metrics was (1) 88%, (2) 35%, (3) 48%, and (4) 61%. Specific improvements observed in teamwork among the 4 RT departments included: sharing of educational resources, development of a cross-departmental float pool, committee to standardize policies/procedures. CONCLUSIONS: The results show that teamwork among 4 separate RC groups improved and that enhanced outcomes were achieved with a business review process. Based on this experience, we recommend consideration of this business review process as a teambuilding activity with clinical benefits. Sponsored Research - None

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