Change Management in Healthcare

10479 Words42 Pages
The Health Care Manager Volume 27, Number 1, pp. 23–39 Copyright # 2008 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins Change Management in Health Care Robert James Campbell, EdD This article introduces health care managers to the theories and philosophies of John Kotter and William Bridges, 2 leaders in the evolving field of change management. For Kotter, change has both an emotional and situational component, and methods for managing each are expressed in his 8-step model (developing urgency, building a guiding team, creating a vision, communicating for buy-in, enabling action, creating short-term wins, don’t let up, and making it stick). Bridges deals with change at a more granular, individual level, suggesting that…show more content…
A second major idea centers on the mindset that a health care manager must adopt before setting out on a change initiative. Kotter identifies the ‘‘analysis-thinkchange’’ mindset as the traditional method used by managers to initiate change. At this level, the focus is on cognition and rational thought, by presenting individuals with information in the form of reports, PowerPoint presentations, and Excel spreadsheets, which form the basis of analysis. This leads individuals to change their thinking and, ultimately, their behavior. For Kotter, this mindset rarely uncovers the ‘‘big truths’’1(p12) about why change is necessary. Employees do not need 200-page reports to show them why paper patient documentation hinders physician decision making and generates increased risk of medical errors. Moreover, ‘‘analytical tools work best when parameters are known, assumptions are minimal, and the future is not as fuzzy.’’1(p12) Finally, according to Kotter, analysis rarely changes how people think, and it does not ‘‘send people running out the door to act in significantly new ways?’’1(p13) To drive home this point home, when employees are motivated, it is something that they feel in their hearts and not in their heads that impel them into action. To instill a feeling of action in employees’ hearts, Kotter recommends that a manager adopt a ‘‘see-feel-change’’ approach. Using this
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