Preparing for the “New Normal”

Part two of the four-part series, The Path To A Sustainable Operating Margin, Mission, and Market Essentiality

As we wrote in part one of this series, health systems nationwide are striving to calibrate their margin, mission, market position, and operating model aspirations while facing the new normal of mounting margin pressure. 

We observe that most health systems aspire to fall into one of four categories, based on their margin engine, mission, and market position (Figure 1).

Executive leadership needs to recognize that committing to any one quadrant takes considerable attention and time from all levels of the organization — because the operating model (the people, the processes, the tools) needs to match the system’s margin, mission, and market positioning aspirations.

In this article, we explore specific steps related to how leading systems “pick their quadrant” and champion change around a clear, compelling, and believable action plan, with a focus on the first of four leading practices — softening the ground to help staff change what they do to deliver the intended mission, margin, and market positioning under the new normal.

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