A Message from the President and CEO
I don’t know about you, but when looking on websites I have historically clicked on mission and values. Although I’d love to think that everyone ascribes to what they’ve written, I tend to be very skeptical and sometimes, I’ll admit, I do some eyerolls as I read. Why? I’ve worked with organizations who say they treat their employees with respect, but their actions speak louder with how poorly they treat them. They say they hold themselves to high ethical standards, and yet, we’ve found some very unethical situations with those organizations that even leadership knew about (By the way, when I found this out, we fired them.) Organizations who say that their goal is to produce the best service to those they serve, and yet they limit services to those who are in dire circumstances and who call Medicaid members “those people” are reflecting who they really are. Companies say they want to be the best at what they do and yet internally they squelch improvement ideas for the sake of politics. I quit working in the corporate world because of this and other antics and shenanigans. I was never one to play the corporate game, because, aren’t games supposed to be fun? It wasn’t.
And after a while, I quit looking at Mission and Value statements on websites. I became cynical. My eyes would glaze over when clients would start talking about missions and values. Why? My thoughts were only, “Show me.” If you do not live and breathe those values and provide actions that are congruent with those values, everyone in the organization knows and no one wants to work in a hypocritical environment. It’s why they leave organizations on a quest to find another that is not hypocritical. I want to see actions. Anyone can say anything, but what do they do when situations are difficult, budgets do not support accreditation needs, emotional support is not present and time is close for accreditation submission? That is when true character and values are displayed. Are people punished for making mistakes? (Sorry, but I have not met any perfect person in all my years of working and living.) Does leadership treat all with respect, no matter who they are and what position they hold, giving credit where credit is due or are they stealing someone else’s ideas and treating them as their own? I hear that story way too frequently from client contacts.
At MHR, when I started adding consultants to the firm, I wanted those with whom I worked to live specific values. Everyone would receive credit for their ideas. I don’t have all the answers, as does no one in this world, and I celebrate what others bring to the organization with their specific skillsets, knowledge, and experience. Everyone is different, and we need to embrace those differences. We would always be ethical in how we work. The end does not ever justify the means, so bending rules in accreditation and hoping that issues are not identified by surveyors or misleading surveyors is not how we work. We always try to do the right thing, no matter what the situation. Are we 100% successful with the values? Of course not, but we acknowledge, apologize, and move on to continue to strive for excellence.
We also tell clients the hard truth of what we find. We do not gloss over issues for the fear of offending anyone. If in your organization the truth is hard to acknowledge and leadership does not wish to hear the unvarnished truth from our perspective, do not contract with MHR. If your culture is terminal politeness or you do not want leadership to know or understand organizational issues that provide barriers to improvement and cannot tolerate truth, do not engage with us. It is not a good fit. We build partnerships based on trust – on both sides. Again, I have fired organizations who do not want to work this way, so I try to avoid even starting work with a client where their culture is not congruent with our values. It will not be a good fit, and I’m always looking for goodness of fit between two organizations, as valued partnerships are forged that way.
When I look for potential consultants who would fit with our company culture, I first look for character. If I cannot trust someone who works remotely all the time for accurate billing and trust that they work independently with integrity, I cannot hire them. They must have integrity, so I ask about situations where they felt compromised personally or why they have left previous positions and how leadership acted. In my corporate life I had to fire individuals for acting unethically or dishonestly, but thankfully I have never had to ask a consultant to leave the company for ethical or honesty issues.
So please read our values statement below. It isn’t window dressing; it’s how we work and how we roll. If our values are not consistent with yours, I’m very glad to refer you to other firms who would say that your money is as green as anyone else’s, and they will happily take it. But if you wish to work with an organization that has values like ours and it fits with your culture, we’d love to come alongside to work with you and help you to be successful. It’s who we are and what we do.
To provide accreditation readiness and support through consulting services that are provided with integrity, humility, and stewardship of client resources by knowledgeable and experienced consultants who have walked in your shoes, understand your situations and work within a company culture that is conducive to achieving this and delighting the client along the journey.
To be the premier, trusted, ethical, and sought-after consulting firm for NCQA accreditation readiness in the US.
Trust is precious, is not easily earned nor taken lightly, and is based on honesty and integrity. Integrity is the basis on which we serve each other and clients. When we make mistakes, we do not try to hide them, but acknowledge and embrace them as a learning experience to perform better in the future. If the mistake negatively impact client accreditation surveys or budgets, we will always make it right and we will not bill for doing that.
We treat each other and clients with respect. We work together collegially as a team to meet client needs.
We embrace excellence in our work with each other and with clients. “Good enough” is not our philosophy nor our work ethic. However, we will not add unnecessary time to achieve perfection, only excellence.
We strongly believe that the NCQA accreditation requirements assist organizations to improve care and service to members.
We are stewards of our clients’ budgets. We do not recommend unnecessary projects that will primarily benefit us financially but are guardians of client money. We serve our clients, not ourselves.
We value detail, precision, and accuracy in our documentation when we identify client gaps in meeting the intent of the NCQA standards and therefore surveys readiness, as accuracy and documentation are critical to client accreditation success.
We make it easy to work with us, anticipating needs, creating learning opportunities, engage in planning to meet deadlines, and being available to meet reasonable client internal timelines. However, we also value the people who work here. Client needs are important, but so is balance in our lives. We work hard to meet client needs, but we also need to take time to refresh and replenish our minds and bodies to serve our clients with renewed energy. Therefore, there is no expectation for consultants to work late at night or on weekends for whatever reason. Consultants may opt to work those hours, but that is on an exception basis based on their preference and is not the ongoing expectation of MHR.
While working with clients to meet accreditation requirements, we will challenge them to set the bar higher to meet industry best practices and therefore enable them to provide better service and care to the members they serve. And because we are very member-focused, we will provide perspective to clients on whether the organization presents unnecessary barriers to members that affects their satisfaction and care. We feel so strongly about member service and value it so highly that a persistent client culture of lack of concern for members may provide cause for termination of the client engagement.
We do not have all the answers and we do not portray ourselves to clients as having them. We are honest with clients when we do not have the answers they need but will seek them with our colleagues. Client staff live in their culture and know what has worked in the past. We value their perspective and provide humble consulting to present potential solutions to them. If they do not listen or implement, we respect their decisions. It is their organization and their accreditation, not ours.
We want to teach our clients to fish and do not want to fish for them. We do not engage with clients that wish to “buy their accreditation.” That means we teach staff the intent of the standards and how it impacts them and others in the organization. We coach and mentor staff on what it takes to meet standards. In limited circumstances we will develop documentation to model what is needed, but we will not do this on an ongoing basis, as it does not train and empower staff to build their knowledge and ability to lead others in accreditation readiness.
We promote independence while coming alongside to provide enough support to assure success.
We empathize with each other and with our clients. We do not always know the difficult situations at work and home that each is encountering. Therefore, we work compassionately with each other.
We value ongoing education, curiosity, and growth for the consultants. We do not want to become stagnant, as the healthcare environment is ever changing and we need to keep current and constantly learning so we can provide knowledgeable support to clients.
We value education but know it is not a cure-all. Knowledge transfer is two-sided. We train clients on the standards but understand that people are at different levels of readiness to learn. We do not criticize clients for slowness of learning but compassionately mentor and coach them in the learning process.
We value creativity both with meeting client challenges and developing tools to assist clients in meeting challenges. We dedicate ourselves to the success of our clients and each other.
We support our teammates by providing guidance and knowledge gained through experience so they can reach their highest potential for themselves and our clients.
Only consultants and clients who embrace these values continue to work with MHR, as these are our core values and are essential and foundational for who we are and what we do.