Lean Experience “A Plus” for Lean Healthcare Job?
Via Google Alerts, I try to regularly scan and see where hospitals are posting jobs related to Lean. I found (OK, Google found) one posting last week that I shared on my “Move to Healthcare” networking site (free registration required to view and participate fully). You can also see the posting here on hotjobs.
One frequent topic of discussion on MTH is how some hospitals are very open to hiring experienced lean and process improvement people from outside of healthcare, while others are insistent on only hiring within the industry. This one position, for a fairly deep “Lean Specialist” job at a hospital in Connecticut not only calls for “7 years of health care experience” yet also says “Lean experience is a plus.” No joke. Read that again.
Now, I'm not saying that healthcare people can't learn Lean. Not at all. I'm not saying that someone from manufacturing can automatically come into healthcare, either. From what I've seen, you need a mix of inside and outside perspectives to be successful with Lean in a healthcare organization.
In the case of this posting, I'm less flummoxed by the requirement for healthcare experience than I am the “lean experience is a plus” part.
This doesn't sound like a job for a lean newbie, with responsibilities including evaluating and developing training materials and training others. This isn't an entry-level lean facilitator role…
I'd think a better requirement would be “7 years of lean experience required, healthcare experience a plus.“
One can only hope that H.R. messed up the job posting and got things backwards… they might have a defective process.
The job description concludes:
The incumbent must be willing to challenge the status quo to ensure that Lean principles are implemented, as well as be able to understand the organizational change strategy and articulate this to external audiences.
Do you think somebody put into that role who is brand new to Lean is more likely to challenge the status quo or get steamrolled? Is this likely to lead to “L.A.M.E.” (Lean As Misguidedly Explained) instead of Lean?