Our Health Imperative: A Methodology to Get From 'Now' to 'Next'
Our health system has the ability to accelerate society’s path to what’s ‘next’ — a next that holds the promise of focusing on health rather than health care or, better yet, sick care.
What's getting in the way?
The system is locked in its ‘mental valley’ of the now — chasing incremental change in hopes that it will ‘fix’ what has been broken for decades.
Transformation itself needs to be embraced and practiced as a core leadership skill because we are all frustrated in the now, and transformation is the constant that will move institutions and organizations to the ‘next’.
Which is why, as the Director of our Patient Experience Lab (PXL), I am excited to share BIF’s methodology for making the transformation journey safer and easier for health leaders.
We know it’s a natural tendency for institutions and organizations in the health space to focus on existing practices and models that have had past success rather than investing in responding to changes in the market with new capabilities. That’s understandable because it feels safe and manageable; the truth is, that yields only small ‘tweaks’ of change.
But a growing number of health leaders have told us that their current approach to change isn’t working; incremental inertia and mindset are keeping them stuck on a ‘healthcare-hamster wheel’.
This is why it is our priority in the BIF Patient Experience Lab (PXL) to provide a methodology that makes transformational work less risky, more manageable, and, well, safer.
BIF’s PXL is a platform where health leaders define and test vital next practices and new business that offer different health models to our population that extend beyond clinical walls to where we live, work, play and all of the virtual spaces in between.
Our BIF methodology offers a clear path for how an organization can make transformational change by starting with the essential first step of shifting its lens to reframe opportunities through the experience of individuals and families.
Seeing Beyond the Boundaries of "What Is" to "What Could Be"
The process begins by helping leaders shift their current lens to understand the gaps that their customers currently face, or, in other words, the job that they need to be done.
By engaging patients, families and organizational leaders in thoughtful and provocative conversations, an empathetic reframe of the customer experience happens and new opportunities for adding value emerge.
Some new value propositions we have been exploring with leaders in our PXL include ‘how might we’…
…recognize that most of what impacts our health happens outside clinical walls.
…extend health beyond clinical walls to where we live, work, play, and all virtual spaces in between.
…acknowledge the medical model as only one piece of the health journey
…respond to the effects of social, economic and environmental factors on health
…take advantage of intersections across medical, social and economic aspects of a person’s health so, new solutions emerge by thinking about them together instead of each in their own “lane”.
…act as a health ecosystem.
…secure real capital– financial, political, and social — to be invested in ways that explore and nurture new ways of working; it’s bigger than funded programs, pilots, or studies.
…invest time and money to establish and foster authentic relationships across health driven sectors
…establish mutually accountable partnerships in and out of healthcare industry that goes ‘beyond handshakes’
…implement new ways to understand, measure and communicate the value of ‘health’ beyond biological measures
…include evidence for agency; how it can underpin health and why it matters of its own accord.
…show that organizations with transformation as a key driver of their strategy will succeed and lead.
…stop ‘thinking and talking’ and start ‘designing and trying’ next practices and new models
Once new value propositions are defined, we work with leaders to combine, recombine or reimagine new capabilities to prototype and test. Prototyping capabilities enable organizations to learn quickly if they have added value for individuals, families and key stakeholders and creates the conditions to capture both successes and failures or make real-time adjustments in the moment.
When a minimally viable set of new capabilities has been prototyped and tested for value, with real people in their real world, we help organizations create a path to commercialize them.
At its core, BIF’s methodology embeds ongoing risk mitigation to decrease time spent on undesirable and ineffective new capabilities and increase time spent on developing sustainable new organizational capabilities to serve as next practices for new business models; getting us on a path to what’s ‘next’ for health.
What Next Looks Like
Creating the ‘next’ in health has never been easy, in fact, it has only gotten harder over time.
With highly regulated environments, increasing system and operational complexity, disruptive competing stakeholders, and a hefty responsibility to do no harm, transforming next practices and new business models that can cure, heal or help is hard.
But it’s happening- with institutional leaders in our Patient Experience Lab and across the globe.
Notable points of lights are emerging from the Unites States, Netherlands and Canada, moving from the now to the next by enlisting a full gamut of cross-sector, cross-industry ‘unusual suspects’ to change the game.
Above all, it is dynamic and what is ‘next’ today will change in one, three and five years from now.
‘Next’ will continue to evolve and be undefined, yet ready to be shaped by institutional and organizational leaders who know how vital it is to stay nimble with heightened awareness aware of what ‘next’ will be.
The goal is to ensure that transformation is a skill and muscle flexed regularly by leaders — in order to stay relevant to our changing health needs.
What 'Next' Now?
Because the low hanging fruit is gone we have incrementally changed or are in the process of incrementally changing all of existing technical problems in our health system — leaving us with complex, human-centered challenges that require new mindsets and capabilities beyond the status quo.
These challenges are rooted in the need to meet our population at the complex intersections of their medical, economic and social needs — which as a direct result, render most of the existing practices and models no longer viable, valuable, or sustainable for institutions, consumers or the bottom line, no matter how much we keep ‘tweaking’ them.
We’ve run out of band-aids and the Frankenstein monster we built is on the loose and scaring society.
It’s time to help get institutional leaders off of the whiteboard and into the real world, to move from ‘thinking and talking’ to ‘trying and learning’ our way to the ‘next.’
Our Health Imperative: Leading the Transformational Change
The conditions are ripe for transformational change that is intentional, safe and repeatable, adding new value for the health of our population.
It’s going to take cross-sector, cross-industry super powers coming together to truly transform health and wellness models for our population because the ‘next’ is still out there undefined.
We share our BIF Methodology today to describe how we help institutional leaders explore and test what’s ‘next’. We also share it because, at BIF, we believe that social system transformation becomes possible when we all open source our approaches, platforms, and experience.
That’s how we get better and faster together.
This is not only our internal process for how we work but also what we believe will make the titanic shifts needed to move the entire health industry forward into next practices and new business models that transform society’s future health and wellness models.
We know we are still early in our journey, so at BIF, we will continue to partner with health leaders to move from the now to the next, leading transformational change together as an ecosystem of health, not a silo of healthcare.
· What are you trying as your ‘next’?
· What advice do you have for others wanting to go from chasing incremental change to leading transformational change?
I’ll pause there and look to you all to fuel this urgent conversation.
With curiosity and gratitude,
Patient Experience Lab Director