Today: Hourly Thinking in a Productivity World
Episode 3520th February 2024 • This Week Health: News • This Week Health
00:00:00 00:10:56


Today in health, it hourly thinking in a productivity world. Here we go. My name is bill Russell. I'm a former CIO for a 16 hospital system we create, or this week health instead of channels and events dedicated to transform healthcare. One connection. At a time. We want to thank our show sponsors who are investing in developing the next generation of health leaders.

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I get that. I understand that. But it's something that I struggle with and I thought I'm just going to, I'm going to talk through my struggles and maybe I'll find an answer as we get through this. And the totally our article is remote work, Deutsche bank band's workers from working Fridays and Mondays at home. All right.

So Deutsche bank, band's remote work on Fridays and Mondays to evenly distribute presence throughout the week. Away from the typical midweek concentration move, may risk employee engagement and retention, and they understand that. Us office vacancy rates rise due to remote work, use real estate value losses predicted globally.

So a couple things going on in this it's a fortune article. I'm not really going to go into it in depth. You can read it. It's again, it's on this week It's right there. And it talks about the real estate crisis. Especially the commercial real estate crisis that's looming because quite frankly, people are coming into work. In those offices anymore, therefore those offices are vacant. And there it's creating issues.

That way, what Georgia was trying to do is essentially, they said, Hey, Three days a week, you have to work in the office and people were working there Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday. And then they were working there Monday, Friday. And it was creating a challenge for them, logistically, or just from a presence standpoint.

Do you have enough workers? In the in the location to handle it. I've said many times in front of CEOs and others. That I stopped. Being a CIO before this, before the pandemic, therefore, I didn't have to deal with this. In fact, the only time I did have to deal with this, I had a group because of some real estate work that was being done at one of our hospitals that wanted to work remotely.

We allowed them to work remotely and they did that for three months. And then when we brought it back, they mutinied. And they essentially said we're not coming back. And we had a decision to make at that point of, what do you do in that case? And I'm sure I'm going to lose credibility here, but essentially before they left, we said, Hey, it's three months.

They're going to fix this thing. We're going to bring you back. Everybody else in the whole organization is back. The role was at the hospital. So it was actually a part of rounding being there at the elbow and that kind of stuff. And so when they decided not to come back I sat down with HR and we had individual conversations with each one and a bunch of them left. And that was okay, because again, expectations set.

They didn't meet that expectation. And that was the world that we lived in back then. I don't think you can get away with that now. But it's it's interesting. So I titled this hourly thinking in a productivity world. And today I'm recording this on president's day. President stays a vacation day for a significant number of organizations and maybe your organization is one of those. My organization is not one of those.

We choose we give 17 paid holidays in our company, which is fairly generous. But this is not one of them. We chose a Martin Luther King's birthday instead of president's day. For various reasons and you just, you can't. Can't give more days off than the government. Otherwise you go out of business.

So 17 paid holidays. This is not one of them. And one of the things I know. Almost beyond a shadow of doubt. And again, I don't know, beyond a shadow of doubt. My gut tells me is I got as the owner of the company probably. 30%. Of the hours that people would normally work today. So if today was supposed to be an eight hour day, I would guess that my staff worked three. Maybe two and a half today. Just in general.

I think that's what transpired. And it got me thinking. I am I upset about that? I'm not really upset about that. Because. That's really hourly thinking. Like they have to be here eight hours to produce something. And I really don't care. That it's hourly. Like they don't have to put in eight hours a day. But they have to be productive. So if there were things that we expect for tomorrow's meeting and it's not done. That's a different conversation then did you put in eight hours yesterday? And as I was thinking sinking through at. I think for a lot of managers, we have to get past this hourly thinking.

And now you might be thinking you might be sitting there going, oh yeah, of course. We've already gotten past this. We've gotten past this until it becomes a problem again. Until we're not getting things done, we're not being effective. And then you have to look at things and then you like Georgia bank go back to that old thinking of if we just bring them into the office for eight hours, Then they will be productive. Which we all know is not true.

And so we have to move beyond hourly thinking. We have to move towards productivity. Thinking the challenge with that is we don't have to measure it. Like we don't have to manage to it and we don't have to measure it real well. We just, we assign things, we get them done, but those are task workers.

We have a lot of workers today that aren't task workers per se. You don't give them stuff and they do stuff there. They're more strategy. They're more. Thinking workers that they have to take a problem and solve a problem. And some problems are solvable within minutes. It's some problems are not solvable within months.

So how do you measure their effectiveness? With regard to this, I don't have an answer for that, but I will say we have to move away from hourly thinking towards productivity. Thinking and I'm trying to move my entire organization to this idea of productivity thinking. I want them to be more productive. And so we're doing a lot of things with AI, a lot of conversations.

I sent out some emails over the weekend of how to use AI. Effectively. Or how I'm using. I'm just essentially using myself as a model. Say. Here's how I'm using AI effectively in my role. And I'm trying to use that as a, as an example. And I will probably be looking into some training here as we move forward to make my team more productive.

Again, 40 hours would love to have 40 hours of highly productive work from my team, but I think we've moved to a new world in which. Every team member has a area of responsibility, something there we're responsible to keep moving, to move forward and to be productive around. And we have to figure out how to measure their effectiveness in those things.

I think by the way, this cuts both ways. Because as a manager, we have to figure that out. But as a worker, they have to figure out how to be effective and productive and to display that. To the organization. Are they moving forward and when they get stuck, are they. Do they know how to get unstuck? Do they know how to engage people to get unstuck? And I'm wondering if we're forgetting how to work as a team. Bring people together to solve problems. Anyway, these are just themes that are floating around in my head. Thought I would share them with you today, but I do believe we have to move beyond hourly thinking to productivity, thinking. Both as managers and as workers, we are about being productive.

And that is I think, going to be more and more critical as we move forward, especially with the advent of AI. Because more and more of that hourly thinking in that hourly work, the things that you need people to put in eight hours for are going to go away. Because the mundane is going to be taken. Bye. Computers and it's going to be done that way. So again, you're paying people to get something done.

What are you paying them to get done? And how are you helping them to get that done in this new world? All right. That's my thinking for today. A lot of rambling actually, but just thought I'd share that with you and love to get your thoughts. Go ahead and shoot me a note. That's all for today. Don't forget.

Share this podcast with a friend or colleague. You said it's the foundation for keeping the conversation going. And foundation for mentoring. We want to thank our channels sponsors who are investing in our mission to develop the next generation of health leaders. Short test artist site. Interprise health parlance, certified health, notable and 📍 service.

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