Most leaders start their journey as really great practitioners who are promoted into management positions.
Makes sense, right?
Pick your top performer and ask them to lead the group. It is natural to assume that a highly-skilled nurse with an incredible work ethic would be a great leader. But being a great leader requires a radically different skill set from being a great nurse and a lot of new leaders find themselves struggling to acquire new leadership skills while on the job.
This was just the scenario Tenet Healthcare was experiencing back in 2012, as 120,000 employees and 4,000 leaders were busy operating 74 hospitals. These leaders were responsible for a lot, especially in a highly regulated and complex environment. Many of them felt the discomfort of looking for new ways to lead in a constantly changing industry and workforce.
Tenet developed a high-potential leadership program for administrators, clinicians, and physicians to help prepare them for executive leadership roles. As a strategic partner for the program, Stoked was brought in to help integrate human-centered design into the cohort experience.
Participants were put on small teams and given business challenges to tackle. Four times a year the cohort convened to advance projects, learn new tools, and practice using human-centered design on projects outside their industry. Each year, approximately 12 teams shared projects and insights with the entire Tenet senior executive team. Some projects continued and some didn’t - by design. Our real goal was to teach these leaders how to create healthy teams and reliably launch new solutions.
Our partnership continued for four years. As the Tenet team became more confident in their ability to design and lead the cohort, Stoked stepped away a little more each year. By 2016, Stoked had trained 15 internal coaches who could stand on their own and shine bright solo.
leaders trained in human-centered design
year-long projects supported
of the participants were promoted after the academy
more engaged than average employee