Slow and Steady Wins the Race!

According to the Chinese Zodiac, 2023 is the year of the Rabbit. The sign of the Rabbit is a symbol of longevity, peace, and prosperity in Chinese culture. 2023 is predicted to be the year of hope. After the turmoil and changes brought on by the pandemic, the promises of the year of the Rabbit are rudiments from which the healthcare industry (and everyone else) can certainly benefit.

When most think of a rabbit, speed and agility are the first attributes that come to mind. Perhaps healthcare executives should instead remember the cautionary tale of the tortoise and the hare. In Aesop’s famous fable, the hare challenges the tortoise to a race. Confident of winning, the hare stops halfway to take a nap. The tortoise, however, continues to move very slowly but without stopping and finally wins the race. The moral of the story is that you can be more successful by doing things slowly and steadily than by acting quickly and carelessly.

Healthcare leaders striving for operational stability, fiscal viability, and organizational sustainability in 2023 must plan for steady, incremental improvement. Like the hare, those hospitals and health systems that start the year strong and fast with change management will most likely find their efforts fall short of the finish line in the long-term. When the bar is set too high too soon or the proposed strategies are not given the proper time to be evaluated and revised, the desired outcomes become unattainable. Making small, meaningful changes consistently over time enables organizations to realize their goals without creating additional stressors, contributing to burnout, or impacting culture. Taking the tortoise’s approach of slow and methodical ensures lasting success.

ALTIUS partners with hospitals and health systems to structure performance improvement and workforce optimization solutions that focus on short-term goals that yield sustained results. After all, it is about the journey and not just the destination.

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