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Kick the Tires to Avoid “Program of the Month” Syndrome

One often hears the term “program of the month” to describe a failed initiative to change an organization’s culture. In such cases, though, it is rarely the fault of “the program.” Rather it reflects a failure of commitment and follow through on the part of the organization’s leadership.

One way to prevent program of the month syndrome is to make an upfront investment in research: to “kick the tires” by seeing the program in action.

Next week we will be conducting a two-day Certified Values Coach Mentor course for more than 70 leaders at Children’s Hospital of New Orleans (CHNOLA).

For that course, we will also have 8 guest observers from 6 different hospitals and health systems from across the country who will be there to “kick the tires.” In addition to participating in the course, we have also scheduled times for them to visit with CHNOLA managers and staff, and to make rounds in the hospital, so that they can truly get a feel for whether and how a Values and Culture Project can work for their organization.

By the way, before CHNOLA made a commitment to a three-year Values and Culture Project engagement, they kicked the tires by sending several executives to check out how the program is working at Midland Health in West Texas.

Your HR department checks references before hiring new people. Doesn’t it make sense for your leadership team to do the same sort of due diligence before bringing a new “program” into your organization?

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