Delta—Chapter 1: Leading Healthcare Innovation


Chapter 1: Leading Healthcare Innovation

Reinvent the future to stay ahead in 5 steps

In order for healthcare systems to keep pace and prepare for the future, they must intentionally encourage a spirit of innovation. Of course, healthcare organizations aren't alone in this; the existence of our very species depends on the ability to embrace and adapt to change.

Here are five ways to establish a foundation of innovation in an organization of any size.

  1. Reframe the Problem.
    It's easy to misdiagnose problems, so when faced with a challenge, it's important to ask a lot of questions—particularly "why?" Once you've gotten to the root of the problem, a whole range of different solutions present themselves, solutions that can connect your organization to the broader context of those you serve.
  2. Take a Human-centered Approach.
    The human-centered approach begins by observing behavior to uncover a patient's needs and desires—because what people say they need and what they really need is often different. This approach leads to solutions that layer true patient needs with the expertise of staff, nurses, and physicians, and are thus more likely to be adopted by all.
  3. A Design-thinking Platform.
    Design thinking is a creative process to develop solutions that balance human needs, form, function, and cost. Analogous thinking, for example, allows organizations to learn from successes (and failures) of other industries and consider how they might be applied elsewhere. Design thinking also draws upon the insights of a variety of viewpoints—a challenge in organizations where everyone has been trained the same way. These 'creative collisions' better reflect the diverse and occasionally divergent needs of the typical patient population.
  4. Prototype and Pivot Rapidly.
    Investing massive effort into developing the perfect implementation plan is not advised. Instead, invest the minimum that allows you to iteratively improve the concept and generate new ideas. Solutions that work in the real world and deliver lasting results usually are designed to simultaneously meet user and business needs. The best way to know if you're on track? Experiment and test.
  5. Leading Change.
    Fundamentally, innovation is about change. And change can be difficult. The co-creation process benefits not only from the diversity of opinion, but because it emboldens all those involved to act as ambassadors for change. This kind of passion doesn't exist when solutions are simply handed off to be implemented.

Embracing the realities of the future requires leaders who possess both deep expertise and immense imagination; who know which rules to break and which to uphold; who are ready to push the boundaries and lead the healthcare industry into the future—but who know that it will require some rolled up sleeves.

Read more. Download Delta—Volume 1.