The following are the key steps and questions that you should consider before deciding whether or not a Six Sigma is well suited for your physician practice or healthcare entity:
1. Assess your market opportunity
Understanding your competitive landscape is the first step in the determination. Six Sigma excels where the factors of competitive pressure and business complexity are high.
2. Assess your leadership
Senior leadership buy-in is critical for continuous improvement. They must be focused and committed to achieving meaningful long-term oals. Effective leaders engrain that view into their business culture, engaging their entire workforce to participate. Forming a separate Six Sigma quality assurance or quality control department that is not strategically integrated with business priorities will certainly fail.
3. Assess your culture
Once you’ve ascertained that leadership is committed to long-term change, you must question whether your organization is stagnant or complacent with maintaining the status quo. Are your processes and workflow paper-driven and dependent upon manual steps? Six Sigma drives a focus to remove “non-value added” and redundant activities in an effort to streamline and create more efficient processes. It provides proactive management tools, skill sets and structure relating to techniques that eliminate the cause of problems.
4. Execute your plan
It is important to fully understand and embrace the long-term philosophy ofyour plan and set realistic, quantifiable and obtainable goals. Concentrate on the cultural aspects of redefining your business. Be committed to your long-term goals and concentrate on driving results.
Six Sigma is not a “quick fix answer” to your problems. It is a proven project management discipline and data analysis science that, if deployed correctly, can energize your organization. But it requires unequivocal commitment from the leadership team, as well as a real desire for long-term continuous