Recently my organization underwent a grueling boot camp style, dramatic and innovative healthcare system process redesign. It was a rip the band-aid off fast approach, and two weeks of asking people to quickly change many of the ingrained daily processes they had known for many years. Set-up for organizational failure?
Nope. I was impressed by the speed at which we were able to accomplish much, while never losing a soul. One of the reasons it worked out so well was due to our Sherpa’s. In the Tibetan region of the Himalayas, Sherpa’s are guides that are highly regarded as elite mountaineers and experts in their local terrain. Our assigned “Sherpa’s” commanded leadership to get out of the way, sought positive opportunities for change at the front lines, and guided staff in doing what they needed to do. As leaders our sole role was to get behind them, coach them, and support them. It worked well.
Read the rest of the story, and the thoughtful wisdom of many others the 2014 International Leadership Blogathon: http://www.toddnielsen.com/international-leadership-blogathon/lead-skinny-cow/