Friday and Saturday, February 13-14, the GRMC Board of Directors held its annual “Board Advance” at the Postels Community Health Park in downtown Grinnell. What is a board advance? It is a two-day meeting formerly called a “retreat.” The purpose of the meeting is to primarily focus on the future of GRMC and do our strategic planning and so it dawned on us we ought to call it an “advance” instead of a “retreat”!
We use a 12- to 24-month rolling strategic planning approach and usually spend the first hour reviewing the performance of the organization in the prior year. For details on the success and challenges of 2008 you can refer to my “Good Bye 2008” blog posted earlier this year. The rest of the meeting is focused on looking forward and deciding on the priorities of how we are going to spend our time, energy and resources advancing the mission of the medical center.
We spend time in small group discussions on topics such as building on our “Optimal Healing Environment” and big projects including the acquisition of major clinical technology. We also discussed advancing our Blueprint for Health (name for our last major capital fund drive that netted a whopping $8.2 million) projects such as the physical and occupational therapy department renovation and expansion. We discussed the ongoing success of our quest to be a national leader in quality, patient safety and service excellence. It was also enjoyable discussing the strong culture we have of employee ownership in the mission of GRMC as evidenced by our impressive patient satisfaction scores.
The board also spent time evaluating its own performance both collectively and individually. The survey tool we have used was discussed and our Trustee Organization and Education Committee plans to revise the survey and process we have used the past several years. We identified several areas of focus for education and improvement activities for best practice governance for the coming year.
On Saturday, members of the medical staff leadership team joined the board for in-depth review of our physician recruitment plan and discussion about our relationship with other hospitals in Iowa. Four physicians serve on the board and along with members of the medical staff executive committee and section chiefs, there was excellent representation from our medical staff. GRMC enjoys a very strong relationship between its board, medical staff and administration. This is key to good strategic planning.
I am so very thankful for community leaders willing to donate their precious time and talents to the mission of Grinnell Regional. We are blessed with talented and committed women and men that believe in what we do and that we are there when people need us. We definitely “advanced” our cause and I am very optimistic we will continue to make a difference to the people we are privileged to serve.
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