Coaching – Physician Leadership
The ”Other” Physician Leadership Program
As a managing partner of a practice, a leader of a department, or leader of a program in a hospital, you are driven to make a difference to the people you work with and the patients you serve. You built your credibility and reputation with your clinical skills, you proved that you are a good doctor, and now you realize that being a leader of a practice / department is a new and sometimes still unfamiliar playing field. You attended a physician leadership program where you learned the ins and outs of health care leadership and then there are still some issues where you are unsure and don’t get the intended results.
Effective leadership is multidimensional requiring intelligence, emotional savvy, and flexibility to navigate beyond one’s comfort zones to become well-rounded and more fully expressed. It requires the ability to respond to rapidly shifting circumstances which requires access to a full range of leadership behaviors and skills most physician leaders haven’t practiced enough.
If you are like other physician leaders, your issues tend to be:
- You don’t have enough hours in the day to cover all responsibilities.
You juggle management duties, clinical responsibilities, and family obligations, which can be tough to manage when one aspect demands more time than the others. You spend more time in the office than sometimes intended, dealing with unexpected fires which leaves you less time and sometimes more conflict with family.
- Your people aren’t working as hard as they could or producing the results you must have.
You can’t do it by yourself, yet when you try to get them excited and committed to success, they let you down time and again. They need you and it is draining and time consuming to have them rely on you so much. When their performance is lacking, it’s often easier to avoid the conversation about being more productive altogether or do the work by yourself.
- You don’t know how to delegate effectively. You do many things on a daily basis that aren’t part of your “leadership role,” and that makes you the bottleneck when it comes to how things get done in the organization. In fact, despite the fact that you have a team in place, you’re still working on things you’re not passionate about that fall outside of your “visionary work.”
- You feel you sit between 2 chairs.
As a physicians you have knowledge and strong opinions about practice management that sometimes can be contradictory to administrators’ thinking and decisions. As the liaison between physicians and administrators you have to reconcile the needs of the clinical practice with the organization which requires diplomacy, facilitation, and effective communication skills.
- You look at leadership through ”clinical glasses”. Clinical glasses are the scientific black and white glasses with lots of data and evidence. Leadership is an area with lots of color where you work with a variety of individuals and personalities on a multitude of subjects. At times you easily get frustrated about the interpersonal aspect of leadership where you still may feel unsure how to properly address conflicting views effectively.
- You feel lonely at the top.
Any executive knows that it can feel very lonely at the top and you don’t feel any different. Even though you are still practicing medicine, other providers look at you as the one who crossed the bridge to the administration. And hospital executives don’t recognize you as theirs because you are still physicians.
What you really need is:
- Effective communication and conflict resolution skills
Communication is the most fundamental skill that any leader must have to get peers and administrators behind their vision. That includes listening skills, rapport building, conflict resolution, and trust building. They allow you to build strong relationships and get more cooperation from all of the stakeholders.
- Coaching skills
Hand in hand with basic communication skills are coaching skills. You will have the ability to see the strengths in people and provide them with what they need to their fullest. People don’t want to be managed anymore; they want to be coached and a few subtle changes in your communication can make a huge difference in their performance and follow-ship.
- Personal development
The skills that got you in this position won’t keep you in this position. Leadership is constant personal development and self-awareness. It requires you to model the behavior, skills, and the performance that you want to see in the team that works around you.
- Freedom to handle the pressures and demands of leadership with ease
Being a leader puts you in a higher category of effectiveness and responsibilities. You know that pressure, demands, and conflicts are part of the game but you want to know the skills and methods to handle interpersonal and business pressure at any time.
- Balance and a life.
Leadership without balance is ineffective. You need time off work to gain a different perspective, keep a balanced attitude, and role model the behavior and well-being that is required for excellent performance and role modelling.
- An objective sounding board
Having a sounding board as your thinking partner allows you to sift through clutter and chaos to help you arrive at clarity in terms of both thoughts and desired action, so that results are accelerated and the potential of both you and the organization is ignited and realized.
We know that seminars are not the most effective tools to provide physicians the above mentioned outcomes; therefore we developed the Balanced Physician Leadership Program – a COACHING program designed to develop personal and interpersonal competencies for physician leaders.
This is not the typical physician leadership program where you attend a three day seminar or three-week program delivered over a nine-month period where you learn the basics about management frameworks and strategies needed to improve patient care, organizational performance, and financial outcomes in your health care delivery system. Instead you get a hands-on, customized coaching program that addresses the fundamental skills for your leadership success.
The Balanced Physician Leadership Program is an unmatched opportunity for you to delve into the specific and complex challenges of leading your peers. The program focuses on key competencies that are proven to be important for effective leadership and include:
- Self awareness
- Social awareness
- Communication and coaching
- Creating and articulating a vision
- Teamwork and many more.
By developing these competencies, you strengthen your ability to meet the challenges of leadership while being a role model that demonstrates balance, performance, and collaboration. In addition, every assessment, activity, and feedback session allows you to drill down into the areas that are personally most essential.
What makes this program so unique:
1. It focuses on the fundamental skills of effective leadership. Business skills and organizational visions can never be fully leveraged without effective self-management and interpersonal skills.
2. Whole-life approach - The Balanced Physician Leadership program takes a whole-life approach to help you handle the pressures and demands of leading. Your personal contentment and life balance play an important part in your leadership effectiveness and performance.
3. Personalized attention – With its comprehensive, personal approach, The Balanced Physician Leadership program allows you to re-focus your personal leadership power to drive future success of their department and your organization.
What you receive with the Balanced Physician Leadership Program
Phase 1: Before the Program:
The Balanced Physician Leadership program is driven by detailed, personal leadership assessments that tailor the program to your specific needs. Prior to the program you will clearly identify measures for success and will go through a short orientation conversation to clarify your goals. The assessment process begins two weeks in advance and can also engage executive, direct reports and peers in an 360 assessment.
Phase 2: The Coaching Program
The feedback of the assessment and the personal assessment create the customized agenda and time commitment for this program. Topics will include:
- Leadership methods and styles
- Social and self awareness
- Emotional competence
- Effective communication
- Coaching vs. managing
- Conflict resolution
- Stress control
If needed, you can also address:
- Effective presentation skills and
- Meeting facilitation
These topics will be covered in 2 coaching conversations each month which can be held in person (Atlanta area), via phone or Skype and with the help of personal and peer feedback.
Phase 3: After the Program
6 months after completion of the program you will have a follow-up meeting to share progress, possible set backs and future goals. During these 6 months, you will have access to the coach for resolving ‘pop-up’ situations.
The Balanced Physician Leadership Program is a program for you where you can voice and resolve your personal challenges with leadership and where you will learn the tools for effective leadership while maintaining a sense of balance and contentment. We will customize the content, the format and the exercises to you and we will guarantee you – this is one of the best investments you will ever make!
Here is how to find out more
If you have read this far you might be interested in taking the next step. If so, I invite you to contact me for a complimentary Balanced Physician Leadership strategy meeting. During this conversation we will explore what challenges you face, what kind of results you would like to see instead and whether this program may be of help or not. Whatever the outcome, you will leave the conversation with more clarity and excitement about what’s possible.
The conversation will take about an hour and can be done in person or by phone. Fill out the contact form below and I will contact you within the next 24 hours. I look forward to speaking with you.
p.s. We also recommend you to visit our presentation overview on physician leadership skills. It is an ideal presentation for your next medical staff meeting, association breakout session or retreat.
Comments or questions are welcome.