Recognize 5 types of supply chain leaders in your hospital

In an industry where health systems are facing increasing pressure to do more with less, doctors and nurses are working longer hours with more responsibilities. Meanwhile, hospitals want to reduce costs without sacrificing quality of care. Therefore it’s more important than ever to look for opportunities for improvement, and in many cases, it starts at the supply chain.

Unfortunately there is often no silver bullet solution. Supply chain challenges tend to be multi-faceted, and require leaders to flex their problem-solving skills in a multitude of ways. These leaders may take on a variety of personas, and they offer unique strengths to drive supply chain progress. Too often, however, their hard work goes unnoticed. It’s time to learn more about these unsung heroes so they can receive the recognition they deserve. Do any of these personalities sound like a supply chain leader you know?

  • The Automator: As hospitals and health systems toggle between time-consuming manual processes and technology-driven solutions, the Automator has the power to turn manual into digital. They introduce tools like smart cabinets and point-of-use wands to take the guesswork out of inventory counts and strive to eliminate manual processes.
  • The Chameleon: The Chameleon takes on different roles in the hospital supply chain to solve a range of problems for different stakeholders. They make an effort to understand the challenges and needs of doctors, nurses, patients, and administrators, and then apply their learnings to formulate solutions that work for everyone.
  • The Datamaster: The Datamaster paves a clear path forward by quantifying the costs of problems and benefits of improvements. Valuable facts and information are the Datamaster’s primary tools to unlock the perfect solution.
  • The Facilitator: Communication and collaboration are the Facilitator’s key strengths. This type of leader breaks down barriers separating different stakeholder groups and helps each group to see the bigger picture. The Facilitator asks questions to tap into the motivations of their support teams and connects their efforts to the mission and measures that matter.
  • The Visionary: The Visionary sees the future of hospital operations. They understand the potential for supply chain improvements and they are eager to share their vision of efficient, automated processes. They generate momentum and help others drive towards positive change in inventory management.

These supply chain leaders are all around us and rarely step into the spotlight. Yet, their skills and strengths are essential to making supply chain advancements that can move healthcare forward. All types of leaders serve as champions of change, and they come together to tackle the toughest challenges in the high-pressure, fast-paced hospital environment. They play a crucial role at every level—they summon their deep expertise from multiple disciplines to support improving quality care while managing costs. Champions also ask the right questions and empower others to develop their own problem-solving skills. At the end of the day, these leaders inspire change and boost existing efforts toward progress.

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