Over the past several months communities around the world have seen their healthcare systems pushed to their limits. As the initial shock to our global physical health begins to wane an important second wave of need is becoming more tangible. As physical distancing continues, many are experiencing isolation, loneliness, depression, anxiety, and other mental health impacts that will result in a potentially overwhelming curve of its own.
While many of our pandemic responses have focused appropriately on meeting real-time needs of internal and external stakeholders, COVID-19 has raised foundational questions about our forward ability to create both stability and responsiveness over the long term. Both as a "coronavirus organizational strategy" and as a future imperative, resilience at the organizational level has become requisite. In our upcoming webinar, TLD Group faculty presenter, Dr. Larry McEvoy, emergency physician, founder of Epidemic Leadership, and past health system CEO, takes a look at the virus as both warning and teacher. The webinar will forward a practical framework for resilience as a strategic asset, not merely a personal or professional one. The webinar will review the key mindset, leadership, and design shifts leaders and organizations can make to create organizational capacity for both stability and responsiveness during times of unpredictability and disruption.
LEADING IN A DISRUPTIVE AGE
Right now, as the virus SARS-CoV-2 alarms us with minute-to-minute updates and pauses us with extra time, it’s inviting us—compellingly-- to reflect on how we will lead in the starting-now future.
Our thoughts jumble as we waken to awareness in this viral 9/11 moment of our global future. “We had no idea.” “There was no way to predict this.” “This could last a long time.” “The epidemic is a black swan, unpredictable and unforeseeable.” “How did this happen?”
Today's workplaces are responding to never before seen challenges and scenarios, all while adjusting to a virtual work-from-home environment. It's clear that solving these new challenges will require individuals and teams to think differently than they have in the past, which begs the question..How can leaders and teams establish a culture of virtual innovation?
Our healthcare system is in the midst of a crisis - struggling to ramp up quickly to respond to patient demand in response to COVID-19. Appropriately so, organizations are focusing on the immediate crisis. However, it would be wise to start thinking about how the healthcare system will function after the pandemic is over. Planning and preparation for healthcare post COVID-19 should be examined to explore the opportunities, challenges, and strategies that we will all face in the future. While no one knows all the answers, this webinar, originally presented April, 29th, 2020, with Dr. Kent Bottles, established health industry speaker, consultant, and thought leader, explores early lessons learned from this medical and economic crisis.
Helping Medical Professionals During COVID-19
The level of risk in patient care today is higher than most providers ever considered when choosing medicine as a profession. The war metaphors being used in the Covid-19 fight aptly fit the threat doctors are experiencing. To emotionally bolster staff and lessen residual trauma, medical leaders and front line providers can benefit from applying well refined military crisis leadership strategies.
Routine to remarkable----overnight. That’s what has happened to frontline medical triage with the rapid, unprecedented and unrelenting onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. EMT, ER and ICU staff are well-trained to handle emergency crises of all types, just not of this magnitude, intensity and duration. Medical team leaders face life threatening issues on a regular basis, but not to their own lives at the very same time. Their training and experience prepare them to rapidly assess, execute and adjust medical protocols to fit the needs of a medical crisis, and then usually the crisis ends. Reports from the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic have medical professionals describing themselves as “soldiers in the fog of war” physically exhausted and emotionally overwhelmed.
A lot Depends on What you do Now....
As I watch the world navigate the complex landscape created by the COVID-19 pandemic, I cannot help but reflect back on my own lifetime. Over the years my path has brought me my own fair share of crises and I’ve learned many leadership lessons along the way. Perhaps the biggest lesson is that having a shared purpose, vision and values on the part of those involved creates the calm required to persevere through the crisis. Afterall, we cannot manage crisis alone.
In the March 27th HBR.org article, Lessons From Italy’s Response To Coronavirus, co-authors, Gary Pisano, Raffaella Sadun and Michele Zanini examine Italy’s ineffective response to COVID-19 and the subsequent failure of other countries’ leaders to avoid them. They describe how the need for quick action and massive mobilization contributed to an ineffective decision-making process and call for a different approach, one that:
- Is systemic
- Prioritizes learning
- Quickly scales successful experiments and shuts down ineffective ones.
A Letter to Frontline Responders
Holly Hughson is an OD consultant and change strategist, who has spent almost two decades working in high-stakes crisis response, humanitarian action and civil-military coordination. Holly's current work focuses on the human cost incurred by practitioners working on the frontlines of human suffering and vulnerability, and she serves as project advisor for “Ethics Education for Crisis Medicine” at the Centre for Military Ethics at King’s College London. In a moving tribute she shares her insights and admiration with the frontline responders of COVID-19.