Transformation is not a one Act

22 Dec 2016

peterlachmanKevin Hardy met up with Dr Peter Lachman (click to watch video), CEO of ISQUA in Sydney at the APAC Forum in September this year. Peter is a clinician who describes himself as “having been on the quality improvement bus for a long time.’’  He continues to live his belief that if you have been fortunate to have experience, then it’s important to share that experience so we are all learning and teaching each other – “spreading ideas, sharing around the world.”

Part of the videoed conversation between Peter and Kevin was transcribed in an earlier post, ‘Improvement Work is About Ownership’. The second part of the conversation is a masterclass in what real transformation is and how everyone can do it with the right mindset for change and a large dose of humility. To be an effective change leader, Peter says that he likes a quote from Nelson Mandela – You have to lead from the front, but be at the back. And, never take credit for the outcomes. The credit is in the glory that the workforce and the patients achieve.

Allowing people to lead and creating layers of leadership throughout the organisation at all levels will build a highly effective transformational culture through front line ownership which is where the problems get solved. However, at the same time, leadership needs to know when to step in and reflective leaders will know when, by continually asking questions of themselves:

Am I on the right path?

Are we on the right path?

Have we got everyone on board?

Much of what Health calls transformation isn’t because you really do need to “change to another for”, however you can still have transactional change in the way that you do your business. It doesn’t necessarily have to be structural change. A changed way of thinking and a new model such as moving from a paternalistic change but rather look at how we can involce all parties. Asking questions framed differently – What type of hospital do we need rather than we need a hospital.


So what does Peter believe are the key ingredients for transformational change? He shared a very simple set of guideline:

  1. Respect
  2. Vision
  3. Hope
  4. Courage
  5. Time and space

You can hear more of the engaging conversation and the detail through here. It will be time and space worth creating!