Psychologists show how we are all subject to cognitive biases. One of these is that we all rate highly those who share the same opinions that we hold, a corollary perhaps of the confirmation bias. With that in mind, there is a highly intelligent and recommended article in the April Atlantic by journalist and author Alexandra Robbins entitled “The Problem With Satisfied Patients”. It is actually adapted from her new book, The Nurses.
Robbins echoes some of the points raised on this blog and offers some horrifying examples: Patient satisfaction can manipulated. Use of numerical rating systems can be fallacious and have negative unintended consequences. Nurses in particular get hit with unfair burdens. Just a few quotes should send our readers to this source: “Patients can be very satisfied and dead within an hour.” “I want that Disney, Ritz-Carlton experience.” “It turns out that nurses are the key to patient satisfaction after all—but not in the way that hospitals have interpreted.”
Books remain to be written connecting this disturbing turn in healthcare with related trends. In education, emphasis on test scores has worsened our system. In business, overreliance on metrics can be destructive. Quantitative measures and methods are important and useful, but there is also a so-called McNamara Fallacy in favor of data and what can easily be measured.
–Jim Murphy has a solo consulting practice called Management 3000, focusing on organizational development and change management. Being semi-retired, Jim is willing to provide very reasonably priced consulting, coaching or project work for organizations aspiring to improvement in organizational culture, effectiveness and employee engagement.
Formerly he led the Massachusetts Bay Organizational Development Learning Group, was Human Resources Director for the City of Boston Assessing Department, and served as a consultant with the Boston Management Consortium. His consulting practice includes management coaching as well as research and writing on employee relationships, leadership, healthcare and collaborative practices. Having produced newsletters for several organizations and being a frequent content writer for the”Confident Voices in Healthcare” blog, he is interested in writing and research opportunities, as well as consulting and coaching.
www.manage2001.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org