Working in complex work environments such as healthcare requires leaders to focus on multiple priorities at once. Sometimes those priorities change on a daily (or even hourly) basis. Many leaders find themselves “putting out fires” or reacting to those changing priorities, which can result in losing focus on the primary goals or losing focus on a large project to reach those goals that may take weeks or months to accomplish.
As a former administrative director at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, and now as a KaiNexus Consultant, I have found that using continuous improvement software during my actual meetings helps me to keep track of progress, and make meetings more productive, while keeping a focus on that goal or large project despite the pressing day to day issues.
For example, I like creating a challenge or project in KaiNexus (obviously, my continuous improvement software of choice) to keep track of the progress of the work as we move forward. This makes a big difference in my workflow and organization by keeping all the components of communication in one place. The software will send out emails for me, will house documents and photos, and allows me the space to document my thoughts and next steps. This allows me to know exactly where to look for that history when I may have forgotten something, giving me a single source of truth for all of my improvement work. Another really helpful feature is a task feature that allows me to assign components of the project to my team members.
How I use continuous improvement software in meetings:
- I will typically have my laptop with me so that I can refer to the information in KaiNexus throughout the meeting
- As I prep for the meeting, I will open KaiNexus and review the project before the meeting starts.
- I like to enter updates and thoughts into the software as the meeting progresses, so I don't forget anything and have a record of it later. If typing during a meeting is too distracting, though, I wait until the end of the meeting to add any updates into the system.
- I find it helpful to create and assign tasks in the software as the meeting goes on, so that we don't forget about any of the action items we've outlined once the meeting ends.
If you have any questions about how to use continuous improvement software in your meetings, feel free to contact us for help.