From DNA sequence analysis to handling electronic medical records, big data in medicine has played an increasingly important role in recent years. To support the growing need to manage and harness big data, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis launched an Institute for Informatics in 2016.
Washington University School of Medicine (WUSM), located in St. Louis, Missouri, is the medical school of Washington University in St. Louis. Founded in 1891, the School of Medicine has a long history of strong informatics research, which has allowed Washington University to take important leadership roles in national bioinformatics efforts, including the Human Genome Project, the Connectome Project and the efforts to understand and quantify the the microbiome.
The Institute of Informatics of WUSM had a big challenge. The Washington University culture was highly-decentralized, which wasn’t conducive to building the crucial partnerships needed to advance its goals. They needed to find a way to seamlessly integrate within the School of Medicine and the University.
The Institute was established through a groundbreaking partnership across multiple schools and stakeholders. The purpose was to help the broader School of Medicine and University recognize that a decentralized model was preventing them from enjoying benefits that otherwise would not happen without a strong, centralized plan. The Institute’s executive leader reached out to Connect the Dots (CTD) to provide the support, structure and accountability his team needed to develop and implement an organizational strategy and framework to support his and the Institute’s stakeholder’s objectives.
Based on initial discussions with the Institute’s executive leader, CTD developed a 4-part project plan to support the Institute and its stakeholder’s objectives.
First, a discovery process was initiated to define current and desired states, identify key stakeholders, and establish metrics for success.
The second stage was a stakeholder analysis. Each stakeholder’s point of view was identified and expectations for the Institute were set.
The third stage was developing actionable strategies to leverage alignment and address gaps. Key to this stage was crafting a roadmap for achieving goals. CTD incorporated discovery and stakeholder analysis to develop:
Finally, the fourth stage measured progress against the objectives. CTD developed and implemented a feedback and measurement process to determine progress against objectives and stakeholder expectations.
The 4-part project provided the strategy and implementation structure that enabled the Institute to form, grow, and evolve in a purposeful way, as well as satisfy and exceed the expectations of its stakeholders.
Through the coaching and team sessions, the leadership developed a better understanding of each leader’s strengths and how they could contribute toward the goals which would create a more cohesive culture