It's Hard to Manage a Secret. This Missing Metric could Help.


Successful executives know that what gets measured, gets improved. If key process metrics aren’t identified and tracked, outcomes are left to chance.

So… here’s the big question. What is your process measure for culture? Think about it.

Culture is simply “the way we do things around here.” It impacts outcomes across the board. As Peter Drucker said “Culture eats strategy for breakfast every day.” The real challenge is managing culture. It can be elusive because it is difficult to measure.

Connecting people, processes and passion is complex. Leadership’s ability to inspire this human alignment defines culture and ultimately determines performance.

If you are a healthcare leader, consider all of the metrics on your dashboard. Is there a process measure for culture? Probably not. It is often the missing metric. This is a huge gap when you consider culture’s significant impact on performance. And it is hard to manage something without data. This may explain why culture doesn’t get its due scrutiny.

What drives culture? The obvious answer is leadership. Ethical leadership research defines specific leadership practices proven to drive trust, commitment, error reporting, collaboration, and innovation. The relevance of ethical leadership in creating a high performing healthcare culture can’t be ignored.

Measuring followers’ perception of specific ethical leadership practices is a meaningful process measure for culture. This metric gets to the heart of the question, “Are our leadership practices creating a high performing culture?”

Understanding how ethical leadership practices drive performance provides a competitive edge and equips healthcare organizations to dramatically improve patient care and outcomes. No matter your target objective, culture plays a critical role. And a reliable process metric for managing culture should be part of your strategy. Learn more about The Culture Metric.

Beth Guyton is the founder and President of Interactive Quality, a consulting firm dedicated to improving US healthcare one culture at a time. Interactive Quality’s Ethic Wise Leadership assessment is a validated metric for evidence-based leadership practices proven to drive performance. Learn how you can get leaders specific, actionable data to drive performance at Interactive Quality

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