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A Homegrown Approach to Physician Leadership

Jacqueline Fellows, for HealthLeaders Media, May 29, 2014

Goren says physicians, by nature, are eager students, and by offering free, traditional CME classes, she and Physician Leadership Academy co-director, Melinda Muller, MD, clinical vice president for primary care, tap into what the doctors want to learn through the formal evaluations that physicians must fill out to earn CME credit.

That philosophy reminds me of the childrearing advice known as Grandma's Rule: Do what you need to do first, then you get to do what you want.

Muller says that initially, the leadership classes were based on the programs she attended through various societies, organizations, and conferences. At first, the classes were basic. For example, early healthcare finance classes were along the lines of "how-to-read-a-spreadsheet."

But those classes have since evolved, because physicians are telling Muller and Goren that they want to learn more. "Now we talk about capitalization, and it is one of the highest-rated classes," says Muller.

3 Levels of Leadership Courses
The first level of Legacy's Physician Leadership Academy is sort of like a starter course for leaders, and helps identify potential leaders for the future.

There are also two other levels within Legacy's Physician Leadership Academy. There is what Muller and Goren call an "emerging leadership" class, a one-day event offered only to employed physicians at Legacy. It's a big picture overview of how to lead at Legacy. It's offered twice a year, and is geared toward a smaller group class, with room for about 10 physicians.

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1 comments on "A Homegrown Approach to Physician Leadership"


Dike Drummond MD (5/30/2014 at 1:46 PM)
It is very important to grow your own leaders from within. Each group has a unique configuration, patient population, provider mix and culture. If you attempt to overlay leadership training in a "one size fits all" fashion or, even worse, outsource leadership or leadership training to a consultant ... you are setting yourself up to simply spin your wheels. And in my experience working with hundreds of physician leaders .. it is ALWAYS all about the soft skills. Grow your physician leaders. Teach them meeting facilitation and project management skills ... so that when the really big changes ahead take hold ... you can turn on a dime and profit from them. Dike Dike Drummond MD www.TheHappyMD (dot) com