I'm a hospital manager in the UK. I have been listening to MT&CT for a few months. I started trinity rollout 7 weeks ago to my non-Doctor directs with excellent results.
However I am struggling to apply MT methods to Doctors. I manage 38 Hospital Consultants (senior doctors which I think they are called "attending surgeon" in US) across 6 specialties (e.g. General Surgery, Trauma & Orthopaedics, Urology) plus over 100 doctors under the consultants.
I am dependant on consultants to deliver results such increased operating room efficiency or reduced infection rates. I conduct half of their annual review and can influence their salary. On this basis they are my directs.
I do not interview new consultants. They are on average paid twice as much as me. They are highly educated; understand the services we provide better than I can. They could find a medical safety reason not to do anything I ask. I have limited influence on their long term career. They have a professional accountability to the Medical Director. On average they are 15 years my senior. Most service improvements come from their ideas. Some of them also have regular discussions with Executives. It often feels like they are the boss and I'm the direct.
Each speciality has a "clinical team leader" which is a consultant who is paid the equivalent of 1/2 a day each week to undertake managerial duties. How this role works in practice varies from some acting like my clinical advisor to some acting like a spokesman or union leader. Those who have tried to take on the role of manager have had strong resistance from some their colleagues who either speak to me directly or are of the opinion that no-one should manage them and they should be solely accountable to their patients.
I love my job. I wouldn’t do anything else right now. I have good professional relationships with my Clinical Team leaders plus about 15 other consultants through which I can get most things done. Fortunately most of my objectives align with theirs with the possible exception of cost saving. I have been doing O3s with the team leaders for years recently moving to a 15/15 MT format although some will periodicaly find an emergency that means they cannot attend.
I would like to hear general advice from other hospital managers or anyone with experience of similar managment challenges. Can you recomend any casts? I tend to find CT casts such as dealing with objections more relevant to this group of staff.
The sort of issues I can struggle with include:
· When I have to make a change that benefits one speciality to the detriment of another
· Engaging with Doctors who have never been managed, do not believe they should be managed, and have got away with this for 20 year or more
· Aligning Doctors with organisational objectives especially cost savings
· Explaining to more senior managers (including C-suite) that I, and they, have very little role power over this group of staff. Unfortunately most of my seniors have little or no experience in managing hospitals and consequently over-estimate role power. I can struggle to explain this while retaining some level of professional subordination.
I’m sorry for the long post and potentially confusing use of the word consultant.
Thanks in advance for the advice