Culture "Trumps" Consult

Dr. C. Alvin Head, President of Premier Consulting Services

Getting the most from your consult recommendation often depends on your hospital culture. Have you ever obtained a consult and thought it looked great but could never execute the plan of action or recommendations, so you ask for another consult?

Often, the issue is the ability to change the culture in the workplace rather than finding different solutions to the same problems.

Culture Trumps Consults Every Time!

The most common obstruction we find in our consultation is that the culture of the institution refuses to change even though the system is not working.

In an article by Paul Bate titled, “Changing the Culture of a Hospital: From Hierarchy to Networked Community,” he outlined three cultures that are often seen:

1. Culture of Tribalism – where professional factions adopt a tribal outlook and dedicate themselves to winning gains for their “patch” regardless of the harm it inflicts on other parts of the organization.

2. Culture of Individualism – where people are left to their own devices and left unaccountable for their actions.

3. Culture of Conservatism – which has a low readiness to embrace innovation and change of any kind.

If you recognize one or more types of these cultures in your organization, you may need a consult to outline the issues from an objective viewpoint and then begin to develop a new culture and change process referred to as a “network organization.”

The intent is to create a new culture very different from the present one, involving major changes in the way people work and relate to each other. This new culture must be developed collaboratively with as many people involved as possible. Engaging all employees in the culture change process will help everyone to commit and uphold the change process.

Creating the right culture in your hospital will lead to the greatest success of the consult recommendations. At Premier Consulting Services, we are here to partner with you through the entire process of change.