Senior Leader Rounding on Physicians

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Listen now to Senior Leader Rounding on Physicians:

Today’s episode of Healthcare Experience Matters is about the importance of senior leader rounding on physicians and providers. Our guest is Healthcare Experience Foundation (HXF) co-founder and president, Katie Owens. HXF is teaming with PRC to bring you this week’s episode. 

Katie makes a strong argument in favor of why senior leader rounding should become (or remain) a top priority. When rounding on physicians is neglected, the costs of disengagement and burnout are just too serious to ignore. 

“Trust is the foundation of all relationships,” Katie told us.

The Right Way

When senior leader rounding on physicians is done the right way, a rapport that bridges gaps to create better cohesion and teamwork is formed. When it is done effectively and consistently, it builds trust and strengthens relationships.

There is a huge opportunity for organizations to support physician recruitment and retention through properly conducted senior leader rounding practices. And on the flip side, the consequences of not having our physician’s engaged are serious.  

“Senior leader rounding is an effective practice to improve the overall climate and helps start to tackle these risks of disengagement and turnover,” Katie told us.

As we learn on today’s podcast, there are many ways to conduct senior rounding on physicians. Unfortunately, many senior rounds tend to happen in silos, are strictly focused on solving problems, or exist only to comply with regulatory demands. 

Best Senior Leader Rounding Practices 

Rounding will always be a good solution, but there are some ways to conduct it that are simply more effective than engaging in it for the dubious value of simply “checking a box.” 

As Katie explains, there are best practices in senior leader rounding that will give us the “best bang for our buck” in terms of the time and resources we invest in this critical practice. 

When senior leader rounding is purposeful it demonstrates leadership alignment. Results should be shared so that accountability is factored in, and follow-up action gets scheduled. 

Senior leader rounding should be part of a larger executive visibility strategy and engage the entire medical staff. It should also be regularly scheduled and personalized. Here are five more tips to help ensure your organization’s senior leader rounding is planned effectively:

  • Determine quarterly communication focus with the senior team.
  • Set calendars so departments will know it is coming.
  • Schedule senior leader rounding with the department director/chair/service line leader.
  • Ask for (and review) the department scouting report.
  • Hold a pre-huddle meeting to communicate with leaders.
  • Difficult Conversations

    Towards the end of today’s podcast, Katie provides us with some great advice on starting tough conversations with personnel and staff.  

    “It’s really imperative to be cohesive and to practice for the tough questions,” she told us. 

    If you’re ready to start having some difficult conversations, here are some helpful thoughts to consider:

  • Share physician experience survey goals, results, and comments.
  • Listen without being defensive. 
  • Ask open-ended questions.
  • Discuss priorities and share your commitment to physician partnerships.
  • Express gratitude.
  • Don’t be afraid to say, “I’m sorry” and “we can do better.”
  • Learn More 

    Make sure to listen to today’s podcast through the podcast player embedded below to learn more about best practices for senior leader rounding. 

    When you are done listening to today’s podcast, you can always listen to more episodes of Healthcare Experience Matters by subscribing for free on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, YouTube or wherever you get your favorite podcasts! 

    You may even want to check out some recent, popular podcast episodes directly linked below:

  • How to Reduce Physician and Healthcare Worker Burnout
  • Practicing Mindfulness for Better Patient Experiences
  • The Conversation Curve™ for Navigating Conflict
  • More HX Matters Podcasts

    Our podcast is dedicated to transforming the health care experience so that every person can receive and deliver the best care.

    You can subscribe to our podcast for free on all major podcast platforms and for video of our interviews, you can always check out the Healthcare Experience Foundation (HXF) on YouTube. Catch up on all episodes of our podcast by subscribing and following us on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Amazon Music and more.

    Meet Katie Owens

    Katie believes that the way we deliver and receive healthcare matters—not just for the patients, but for the caregivers, the providers, and administration, too.

    As President of the Healthcare Experience Foundation, Katie is taking bold steps to assure that every organization has access to resources for engaging patients and developing their workforce to achieve results. Katie is an innovator, implementing new ways to deliver the best in patient-centered care.

    She has influenced hundreds of organizations and thousands of leaders to equip their cultures and instill competencies that create environments of person-centered excellence. Her fundamental tenet is that every person is worthy of an environment where they feel confident in receiving and delivering the best possible care. Known as a leader among leaders, Katie previously served on the HealthStream Leadership Team as Vice President of the Engagement Institute. She also served on the Baptist Health Care (BHC) leadership team in Pensacola, Florida, where she supported the system’s sustained journey to excellence. Katie has led teams of expert coaches dedicated to improving the quality of the patient experience and has been instrumental in creating leading-edge learning assets to support patient experience competencies. She is most proud of having grown Baptist Leadership Group to one of the most respected healthcare coaching practices in the country before being acquired by HealthStream in 2013.

    Katie is the lead author of The HCAHPS Imperative for Creating Patient-Centered Excellence and is currently writing her second book about the importance of speaking the patient’s language. She is frequently quoted and has been published in the Huffington Post, Healthcare Financial Management Magazine and Hospitals and Health Networks. She is an energetic, internationally-recognized speaker and has presented for many highly-respected organizations, including American College of Healthcare Executives, Beryl Institute, Cleveland Clinic’s Empathy Summit, Society for Healthcare Strategy and Market Development, and Healthcare Financial Management Association.

    Connect with Katie Owens
    More episodes with Katie Owens