3 Questions to a Successful 2018 for Strategic Growth

3 Questions to a Successful 2018 for Strategic Growth

As 2018 approached quickly, many people began to form their “New Year Resolutions.” Unfortunately, for many, these resolutions will fade away within a few months. According to research at the University of Scranton, only 8% of people fulfill these goals and aspirations. Diving into a multitude of articles on resolutions and goals, many of these issues stem from setting unrealistic goals that do not have solid reasoning and planning.

The success rate of accomplishing resolutions has proven to be low, however, setting goals should not be avoided. The 8% that do succeed in accomplishing their resolutions take their time to plan. A goal will not be achieved through setting said goal but in the steps, you take to achieve it. Recognizing what your healthcare organization should be accomplishing daily will create an impact on that long-term goal – positioning your healthcare organization in the 8% and maximizing your return on investment.

If you set goals for your organization for the year of 2018, it is imperative that you ask yourself these three questions:


What is the greatest challenge your organization faces?

The battle of staying focused when being asked to complete numerous tasks is often the biggest challenge in many industries. A study done by Workfront backs this realization through discussing that unrealistic timelines, overwhelming workloads, and unproductive meetings are the main killers of productivity within organizations. It is imperative for physician liaisons to prioritize what needs to be communicated to physicians to ensure efficiency.

What do you know now that you wish you knew at the beginning of the year? Through looking at which targets were hit in 2017 and which ones “missed the mark,” you can determine actions to take within 2018. Implement the actions which did work and learn from the actions that did not. Using a tool to create market insight generated through referral data enables an organization to set reasonable expectations based on prior and current performance, for example, referral goals.


Do your goals align with your organizational priorities?

The goals you set should align with your organization’s, hospital’s, or program’s mission. The alignment of your goals with your five-year plan ensures that there is a clear connection as to why you are setting that goal, therefore preventing inflation of goals to meet and tasks to fulfill. A quote by Timothy Crowley, former Managing Director at Leerink Swann is, “Going into a hospital board room and 99% of the time they are talking about referrals or physician relations.” Do your goals align with advancing referral development and physician relations? There has been a 92% increase in referrals within the past decade with the rate continuing to incline. Ensuring market share through referral development is becoming more and more critical. Mitzi Kent, a senior director of physician relations and industry, discusses the importance of using a data driven approach to ensure that goals align with hospital plans. Through using a data driven approach you can determine what type of people need to be involved at what skill level to fulfill goals. Then, look at what key items are needed to report to see if the program or organization is moving towards a positive and measurable result.


Are my expectations reasonable?

Talk with your team; ask them if the goals you have set and the expectations you hold for your healthcare organization or program are achievable in 2018. Then, ask them what you can do to help make these expectations more attainable. For example, Kent discusses that the key to building up your program is to make sure you get the involvement of key stakeholders within an organization when creating goals. To ensure expectations are managed properly, meet with senior leadership to hear about what they want to accomplish, what value they hold in the program, and what would be a measurable result to see if the program is effective.


Final Thoughts

While data driven strategies are a proven way to increase referrals, the healthcare industry is driven by relationships. Therefore, referrals are heavily driven by relationships within your organization and externally. Physician liaisons, need to make the process of building relations for physicians less difficult through determining what should be communicated. Utilizing data driven tools to help narrow where physicians and all other staff spend their time then incorporating that data into a plan – as well as aligning these plans with hospital strategic goals – aides in the happiness and focus of all staff leading to a successful 2018.



To help you identify key opportunities for alignment and strategic growth, enjoy this organizational priority worksheet. Click here for the tool.