June 2010

Quality

There’s a sense of satisfaction, unlike any other, that comes from a job well done. You just know, in your innermost self. And when you also know you’ve made a difference and added value to someone else’s life, your personal world somehow feels right at the end of the day. 

For an institution, I think quality is about as many people as possible—and preferably, of course, everyone—going home with that feeling of accomplishment and pride. Efforts to measure quality are proliferating, as you know. And while several of those metrics do manage to capture how often things are done correctly and on time, true quality always seems to reside somewhere beyond the numbers. It remains essentially an intangible, but an intangible that everyone instantly senses is there…or not.

I’d say that quality is, at its core, the result of a team of people giving the best of themselves to something that matters deeply to them. Through a growing list of awards, we’ve already seen remarkable validation that our Hospitals, our School, our individual programs, and our Medical Center as a whole are making their mark in this regard. And if each of us goes home knowing we did the best we could that day, then quality will shine through every single thing we do and become a self-perpetuating force.

It seems to me important that, from somewhere in the depths of time, the word “quality” and the word “who” share the same root. One of my highest aspirations is for quality to go beyond particular triumphs and define the essence of who we are—in our own eyes, as well as the eyes of the world.