There have been many initiatives over the last several decades to improve an organization’s efficiency and effectiveness. Few have achieved actual results and even fewer have been tested in the most difficult situations. The United States Navy has lived and proven the results of HRO for the better part of 30 years. The Healthcare industry has taken notice and the “lessons from the Fleet” are valuable lessons for civilian and military healthcare.
In the coming weeks and months, COORS will help to break down what HRO is. What are the fundamentals of high-reliability? How can it be of value to your organization? These posts will explore how “Lessons from the Fleet” can be tangible and actionable goals for your organization. Can the way an organization deals with risk affect reliability? Can an organization’s culture (positive or negative) have a profound effect on its ability to reach the highest levels?
Goals of the HRO
HROs are organizations that operate in high-pressure environments under less than ideal conditions that still accomplish near-perfect delivery of services. At every level in almost every organization that deals with high stress, high speed, and constant change, the objective to be perfect is constantly desired and sought after.
Individuals experience this throughout their lives, starting at the youngest of ages when competing in youth sports, in high school academics, and entry-level job searches. When these individuals with diverse experiences, educational backgrounds, ages, and prejudices become members of a team, the challenges to deliver “near-perfect” anything can seem monumental. However, despite these challenges, time and time again high-reliability status has been achieved. In the medical community, where life and death are an everyday reality, these organizations must constantly strive to exceed near-perfect, because lives are the line. Emergency Rooms and Operating Rooms can be considered prime examples of pinnacle efficiency and performance when everything and everyone is working towards the same goals and objectives. This is done by optimizing protocols for the following goals:
- The reduction of foreseeable human error to near-zero through structured protocols that ensure operational stability
- A culture of accountability and support, with numerous checks to help participants succeed in HRO-level performance
- Increased professional development and training to strengthen processes and maintain performance standards
Join COORS soon for the next part of this series, as we look at the principles of high-reliability organizations.