Truth to Power

Build your relationships first….then your dentistry. ~ Bob Barkley

Truth to Power

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What is the functional IQ of your Care Team? This turns out to be a very important question, because we can easily assemble a team with average IQ’s (around 110) and if they do not know how to optimally function as a unit – if they can’t leverage each other’s intelligence in a synergistic fashion, then the team as a whole will function as if the its average IQ is 90 or 100 and we need 120.

It has become the rage today to talk about EQ – Emotional Intelligence, but what really matters most at the end of the day is IQ because it is predictive of success in complex problem solving environments.

So, what is IQ and why is it relevant? IQ is the ability to take abstract problems and repeatedly come up with effective creative solutions. So, IQ is key because memorization and following direction is not nearly enough in a person-centered practice full of patients with complex and abstract physical and emotional needs. Add to it that most patients are not even aware of their needs, biases, and decision-making processes, and you really do have an intellectual challenge on your hands.

A disorganized team is limited in its effectiveness because of misunderstandings, inaccurate assumptions, ineffective communication, working at cross purposes, and even in-fighting.

Thus, an effective team – not individually smart people – become vital to the long-term success of a truly patient-centered practice. It is where the proverbial rubber meets the road, because if teams cannot learn together, the practice as a living social organization cannot learn. And if the practice cannot learn, it can not adapt to a rapidly changing marketplace – hence, it has no meaningful future.

So, how do we raise the IQ of our Care Team?

Through EQ.

Through emotionally intelligent leadership.

And yes doctor, that is your responsibility.
You pick them and you lead them -one way or the other. In other words, you choose the parts of the social system, and you are the designer of the social system which creates the outcome that you love or loath.

Sorry. Just speaking truth to power.

Paul A. Henny, DDS

Thought Experiments LLC, ©2018

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