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Lessons for hospitals from the Uber mess

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Paul Keckley, Ph.D., the healthcare analyst, writes in Hospitals & Health Networks about  lessons to be drawn from Uber’s public-relations nightmare. Among them:

“Social media exposes an organization’s culture. Despite anti-disparagement warnings in separation agreements intended to mute shop secrets from former employees, the proliferation of information sharing via social media and in sophisticated competitor intelligence gathering done by top-tier organizations makes keeping workplace secrets virtually impossible. And it’s especially important to manage relationships with employees who leave or are dismissed from an organization: Their impact on the organization’s performance and reputation is profound.’’

‘’Hospitals are tough places in which to work. Highly talented and opinionated professionals work in settings where margins are shrinking and media attention is intense. Hospital boards must pay close attention to how CEOs behave; who they promote, keep or run off; and how our workplaces are affected.’’

“Boards must broaden their CEO evaluation processes beyond usually perfunctory annual reviews tied to their compensation. They must gather objective data about the workplace culture from employee surveys and direct interaction with the human resources team. They must identify areas for improvement in hiring, performance measurement and cultural healthiness, directing these suggestions to CEOs and key senior managers. They must be vigilant about how their CEOs behave and be willing to make changes when they are known to bully or condescend in interactions with peers and subordinates.’’

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