Skilled Interim Leaders Turn Short-Term Vacancies into Long-Term Advantages–Healthcare Facilities See Improved Performance with Strategic Use of Interims

Lenexa, KS (Vocus) October 15, 2009

When a key leader leaves an organization of health, it can affect financial performance, operational and clinics for months or even years, according to recent data collected by the American College of Healthcare Executives. But despite its challenges, a vacuum of leadership provides an opportunity to exploit an appropriate interim leader of the organization to the next level.

? The hiring of an intermediary who simply? fills the void? to maintain the operation department until a permanent leader can be found seems logical, but it contributes nothing to the positive dynamics of the organization? said Doug Smith, President and CEO of leadership solutions for health and consulting firm BE Smith. Health managers? Discover that the most successful interim leader can be an effective strategy to improve long-term business. Bridging the gap is no longer satisfactory, it should not be.?

seasoned leader through providing the opportunity to have an immediate and lasting impact on the organization in terms of improved financial performance, operational and clinical. The experience, while necessary, is only the starting point. ? The executive knows the right industry best practices and provides knowledgeable, objective point of view supported by the proven success in acting assignments? Smith said. ? He or she is not bound by organizational policies, and can focus on the goal at hand.

In addition to meeting the organization? s day to day leadership needs during the vacancy, an interim strategy will begin with a comprehensive assessment to identify operational improvement opportunities. This assessment is followed by a written action plan outlining concrete strategies and achievable, which will lay the foundation for significant performance gains. An intermediary will also be efficient implementation strategies for short-term priority of the organization, while developing a transition plan and the recommendations of experts in the long run for his permanent successor. Finally, the leader will provide a way to measure return on investment for their efforts, according to Smith.

Case in point: a 750-bed, nonprofit hospital has hired an interim director to fill a void of leadership in their emergency departments of 80 beds. The results of the Acting Director obtained were spectacular turnaround for emergency services have decreased from 255 minutes in October 2007 to 195 minutes, a year later, despite an increase in volume in 2008?. What? In addition,? Left without being seen? rate decreased by 10 percent in April 2008 to 1.5 percent in December 2008, then? investment coming to bed? time from 73 minutes to 24 minutes in early 2008 by October of that year.

The strategic use of an interim leader can also be successful in the non-clinical side of the company. In a compelling example, a 500-bed tertiary hospital made an Acting Vice-President of Operations to fill a void of leadership. Upon arrival, the provisional leader focused on educating employees willing to cover additional areas of expertise. It also has the number of employees the right size, decreased supplies, spending reduced and the contract has ceased operations when expenditures exceed revenues.

The results obtained in the hospital far exceeded their expectations. During the first six months, the interim leader to reduce overall spending $ 3 million and created a sustainable, positive net income. It was the bottom line first positive of the hospital had experienced since its acquisition by another health care organization.

? organizations with cutting edge margins of Health is today, managers need to ensure continued growth,? Smith said. ? Innovative makers using interim executives to turn a short-term position in a long-term benefit.

To meet the growing demand for talented executives with the skills and achievements to improve the strategic outcomes, healthcare organizations increasingly rely on companies that employ their leaders acting to some extent, said MaryAnn Digman, RN, BS, MSHA, senior vice president, interim management for BE Smith.

? Working with companies that use third-party model of employment is more secure and profitable. Interim managers are employed by the company that manages their taxes, insurance and deductions. This eliminates exposure to regulatory bodies health? she said. ? Oversee the firm’s interim leaders in the field, using performance goals clearly defined in the agreement to advance the organization.?


B. E. Smith:

Founded in 1978, BE Smith is a full service leadership solid solutions for healthcare providers. Following is Smith? S range of services includes interim leadership, permanent executive Investments and Consulting Solutions. The company is composed of leaders of veteran health in partnership with each client to create a solution that fits the client? S to individual needs. In 2008, BE Smith placed more than 600 leaders in health care organizations worldwide. For more information, visit or call 877-802-4593


Case Study: Interim Chief Takes the emergency department to the next level

Harris Regional Hospital in Sylva, North Carolina, the unexpected resignation of the head of the emergency came at a critical time. The department is preparing to add six new exam rooms, while the staff worked hard to maintain recent gains in patient satisfaction.


Director Sheila Price, BSN, RN, FACHE, named BE Smith, one of the solutions of the health and leadership consulting firm that employs hospital executives who provide interim leadership. ? Health, you can not afford to go back? Said Price. ? We felt this investment was essential to maintain the momentum forward.?

A senior health administrator with over 15 years experience in nursing leadership, the Acting Chief BE Smith began with a thorough assessment of the emergency, identifying needs and providing a document with action steps that have been prioritized with Price? help s.

The interim

took a number of measures to achieve the performance objectives. She worked closely with physicians and staff to develop standardized treatment protocols based on best practices nationally. Measures have been taken to improve the service? S data collection and analysis activities and improved processes have been implemented, to use urgent Harris data to identify opportunities to improve the patient experience. And she helped the staff to find ways to use resources efficiently and for care of patients as quickly as possible.

She also implemented several solutions to operational problems. A new department calendar moves allocated more fairly, effectively corresponding to the peak and focus on jobs employees were hired. Costs were contained by maintaining stocks at the lowest possible level, and several equipment purchases low-cost improved clinical efficacy. The Acting Chief, then finding errors that resulted in lost revenue and has created an easy to use the scoring model to help nurses to identify the right level of acuity. The system produces charges that are more accurate and justifiable if verified, according to the price.

A wide range of

? people? Questions were also raised. An orientation process more effective for retention of the new improved personal and ministry? S nurse responsible management structure was strengthened by a new detailed job description. She then worked one-on-one with individuals to show them how to be more effective in their leadership roles.

According to Price, bringing in the interim leader was profitable because it laid the foundation for large performance gains.

? For us, the recovery was dramatic? she said. ? Even after only two months, we have a more solid foundation.

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