Working with Do Tank Health

Diversity, equity, and inclusion has been a main focus for us ever since we created a conference experience and produced multiple videos for the Institute for Diversity and Health Equity (part of the  American Hospital Association). A big part of what we do is helping people navigate complex conversations – we apply our facilitation skills and design tools to challenges that benefit from  empathy and structure. Topics that relate to diversity, equity, and inclusion are an amazing fit for a human-centered design approach, and we have created custom tools (and facilitated conversations) for major health systems and national, non-healthcare organizations (running  sessions – with partners – in both English and Spanish). We have also created film and animation  outputs for diversity based initiatives.

Outside of our diversity, equity, and inclusion work, we have deep experience helping health systems charter and launch community based partnerships that are aimed at addressing social  determinants of health. This work, with partners such as LISC, the Montana Office of Rural Health, and the Association for Community Health Improvement, has focused on issues that impact native populations, veteran populations, and other people in all walks of life.

To deliver a seamless learning experience, we have developed a customizable digital innovation  platform that can be rapidly branded and themed for our client’s organizations. Whether it is built in  support of ongoing learning and community building or for particular large events, this innovation  hub is the focal point for our blended learning experience. We have integrated some of the content  with existing Learning Management System (LMS) systems and imported it behind client firewalls. This offers us the opportunity to:
  • Consume bite-sized learning content, at their own pace, through the intuitive user experience of our learning management system
  • Access a catalog of visual tools that support rapid collaboration and design thinking methodology
  • Experience live learning events using our chosen interactive whiteboarding tool called Mural
  • Communicate via video using, Zoom, Skype or Microsoft teams
  • Communicate with a peer using the innovation hub’s social network
  • Experience pre and post-learning assessments and surveys to support their transfer of knowledge
  • Receive calendar invites to live sessions, reminders and coaching moments for self-learning. This is powered by email automations to support the completion of courses
  • Return and review the output of live learning and self-learning courses to support knowledge and skill retention

We have a passion for working with frontline workers, and have run many workshops in addition to  creating bespoke design tools for clinicians. Our ‘clinician burnout canvas’, for example, helps  people explore burnout risks at the individual, system, and industry levels. It is designed to help  teams explore the actions that they need to start, stop, reduce, or increase at every level.

We have designed a custom workshop to help frontline workers understand how they can make improvements and embed positive innovations around the experience responding to COVID-19. We have done this work with nurses and physicians–but, also with facilities, information technology, marketing, and other teams.

We have a growing practice and dedication toward helping frontline providers continue to grow around the core pillars of High Reliability Organizations. With a custom design tool inspired by James Reason’s ‘Swiss Cheese Model’ and a whole series of tools to help assess current state and enact the five pillars, this is an area of particular passion and expertise.

Another area of specialization has been the chartering and forging of Community Based Partnerships. We have a number of experiences that we can share around helping health systems and frontline providers design meaningful partnerships that help address social determinants of health and ‘meet patients where they are’ out in the community.

Finally, we have led many cohorts on innovation design journeys that have run through at least one year.
For two years, until federal funding ran out for the program, we were the design partner for the Illinois Hospital Association’s annual Innovation Challenge. In this work, we helped winning, cross-functional hospital teams design, refine, and share processes and playbooks around clinical innovations.

We were the strategy design partners for Providence Health and Services in Portland, Oregon. We led on-site experiences at least four times a year for three years. We helped shepherd a different cohort of four to six teams, comprised of people from across the system, each year through customer interviews, ideation, business model design, prototyping, and pitching for investment.

We have trained multiple ‘Innovation Champions’ cohorts at a health system around facilitation methods and design thinking. This has been done through a mix of physical workshops, virtual training sessions, and on-demand video content.

 A current project involves being the strategic design partner with a 27 hospital health system build a definition and strategy around ‘Access’ – we are working with clinicians and operational people across the entire organization to help build a playbook that will facilitate growth around creating experiences that are easier, more personalized, and more affordable for patients.

The arrival of COVID-19 forced us to grow the virtual facilitation options at our disposal, but virtual  engagement has long been a part of the experiences that we design. A workshop, either in-person or  virtual, should be considered a key moment in a journey, rather than the ‘be all; end all’. This journey  includes pre-event engagement and robust post-event digital interactions to keep people excited  and applying what they learn. We have relied heavily on Mural, Miro, and Mibo (they all sound alike!)  along with a range of other virtual environments and tools. Our own digital hubs are a big part of the  journey as well.

If it is going to be a real-time experience, either in-person or remote, then a workshop environment where  people apply what they learn and acquire skills by doing is how we approach things. “Training” is a  good fit for the dissemination of knowledge and best practices; it can often be achieved through  pre-recorded and on-demand content. In both cases, you want folks to learn things, but one should  leverage the best features of the environment.  

“Trainings” can be academic in nature and allow people time for deep introspection and the  acquisition of knowledge at their own pace (within the constraints of deadlines). Workshops should  leverage the dynamism of groups and give people lived experiences that can be applied in their own  professional context. 

This cannot be done if a ‘chartering’ session isn’t done in the beginning to gain clear articulation of shared goals and vision. Iif we partnered, it would be necessary to align on how we will work together, the roles that key team members will play, and how we can help you achieve this vision. So often, people just ‘start doing things’ without a proper kick-off, but it is extremely hard to communicate and align with clients without this. A common cadence for us is a weekly ‘core team meeting’ to stay aligned on what has happened, what is in progress, and what is yet to be done.

Most of our work has a high degree of customization to it. We work with people to creatively  understand and tackle complex challenges – there isn’t a ‘cookie cutter’ approach to that. Flexibility  and agility is a requirement for us. We are a pretty creative and experimental team too; we love to  try new things and live the iterative approach that we preach. 


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