Dave Ramsey first introduced me to the term Sanctioned Incompetence. To sum it up, sanctioned incompetence means that if we allow people to get away with bad behavior then it will ultimately destroy the morale of the team. Sanctioned incompetence will destroy your hospital’s culture and will often lead to the “good” people leaving your team.
I have seen of Sanctioned Incompetence playing out in a couple of ways.
First is the obvious, you have someone in your hospital who just is not capable of doing the job you hired him or her for. Be it the technician who can’t draw blood or the assistant who can’t seemingly learn how to properly restrain a dog even though she has been given a ton of instruction.
These are the obvious cases of someone who no longer needs to be working in your hospital, which usually makes for an easy decision to let them go.
The other group can be more challenging to deal with well.
This is the technician who is a great technician when he is there but has a habit of calling out sick a Monday or two a month. How does this make the other people on your team feel, when they are working as hard as they can yet this person seems to have a different set of rules than the rest of the team? Does your team joke about when this person is going to be “sick’ again?
What about the doctor who is not a team player? Who does not seem to completely buy into your core values or the why behind what you do BUT she is a big revenue generator. I have heard directly from business owners, “well, we cannot get rid of her because she is such a big producer”. When statements like this are said, you are reinforcing to everyone on the team, “yes, culture and core values matter, but not as much as the bottom line.”
As you can imagine, I have strong feelings about situations like these but I really want to know what YOUR perspective.
I bet everyone reading this has worked with people like this technician and doctor. I would love to hear what you think about working with people like this and how it made you feel about your working environment, your hospital’s culture and its leadership.
Have you ever worked with people like this or other people who had “issues”? What did you or the leaders in your practice do?