Pursuing Our Potential Together


Commitment to Culture Builds Organizational Strength

How do we turn adverse events into learning and growth opportunities?

With aspirations as lofty as ours, the Performance Leadership Team is committed to doing everything possible to ensure the success of the organization and of our people. Cincinnati Children’s has a long-standing history of delivering on key performance indicators (KPIs), thanks to the dedication of our people and our commitment to excellence in everything we do. But an organization’s health can’t be measured by KPIs alone. Said Nerissa Morris, senior vice president, and chief human resources officer: “Our success is dependent on not just the outcomes, but on how who we are helps us to get to where we’re going. For instance, how do we as individuals and as One Cincinnati Children’s cope, adapt, and persevere when something like the COVID-19 pandemic descends? How do we turn adverse events into learning and growth opportunities? How do we support the resiliency of our people so that they can support one another, and our patients and families? That is true organizational health.” To foster a rich and deep source of energy to support and sustain this work over the next 13 years, we first began to assess any opportunities to further strengthen our culture. A cross-functional team with input from many throughout the organization developed four leadership practices and four mindset evolutions (called our 4x4) that each of us can act on to improve our work together. The four leader practices for leaders at all levels are:

  • Increase strategic clarity
  • Collaborate with commitment
  • Simplify decision making
  • Elevate our people

The four mindset evolutions are:

  • Work as One Cincinnati Children’s, instead of as separate teams.
  • Strengthen our mission through stewardship, instead of pursuing the mission at any cost.
  • Take smart risks, instead of minimizing risk.
  • Focus for even more impact, instead of thinking we have to do everything.

How can making the shift in mindset help you to accomplish your aspirations each and every day? As we work to evolve old mindsets it’s imperative that we all refresh ourselves on our Core Values and what it means to be a Cincinnati Children’s team member. While our work is varied, it is all vital. And while who we are and how we approach our work is diverse, our expectations for ourselves, and for each other, are the same.

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It's imperative that we all refresh ourselves on our Core Values and what it means to be a Cincinnati Children's team member.

Our Expectations, Our Values in Action

Advocates for diversity, equity and inclusion, creating a safe environment for colleagues, patients, families

Develops meaningful connections by treating others with kindness and respect

Supports others through coaching, development and recognition

Inspires colleagues and teams by explaining the "why behind the what"

Seeks feedback and listens with grace and gratitude, but does not require consensus to make a decision

Assumes positive intent, dissents respectfully and commits once a decision is made.

Builds trust through vulnerability, transparency and consistency between words and actions

Holds staff and others accountable for living our values and leading these expectations

Courageously speaks up by telling the truth and advocating for what's right, even when challenging

Achieves clarity by setting goals focused on what matters most with ownership and accountability

Takes full ownership by solving problems effectively and executing on commitments

Responsibly uses CCHMC resources, knowledge and capabilities to strengthen the mission

Seizes every interaction as a chance to learn, teach and discover

Creates and contributes to a culture of continuous improvement and coaches others to do the same

Takes smart risks through experimentation and a bias to action moving beyond "the way we do it here"

New Expectations to Strengthen Our Culture

Achieving the bold aspirations we have set as part of Pursuing Our Potential Together will take all of us working as one Cincinnati Children’s. We start from a place of great strength—our people. It is your focused commitment—and the collaborative, compassionate culture you create—that helped us achieve the goals of our five-year strategic plan (SP20), and we know you will rise to the challenge again as we aspire even higher. Even a high-performing culture such as ours can be strengthened further. And we’re never stronger than when we work together guided by our vision, mission and core values. From those values—and with input from employees across CCHMC—we developed a set of common expectations for all employees to model. Our Expectations answer the question for every employee: What is expected of me every day to help Cincinnati Children’s succeed? Committing to Our Expectations will propel us forward and upward, ensure that we are working as one, and help us achieve our bold aspirations.

While these are individual expectations, you won’t be alone in incorporating them into our culture. They will become part of everything we do. To start, they will be embedded into our processes and programs for performance, learning, leadership, rewards and recognition. In addition, managers and leaders are being equipped with tools to facilitate discussions with their teams about integrating Our Expectations into daily work. In the coming weeks you’ll hear even more about Our Expectations, including opportunities to learn about how you can model them every day. Watch for more information! We are committed to pursuing our potential together, so all kids can pursue theirs. With your help, Our Expectations will help us get there.

Our Expectations answer the question for every employee: What is expected of me every day to help Cincinnati Children's succeed?

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