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Humanities Institute

The Leslin Institute for Healthcare Humanities (LIHH) addresses issues in the delivery of healthcare service through an interdisciplinary approach embracing medicine, humanities, and business. It focuses on identifying the challenges experienced by staff and patients in the current healthcare delivery system and works to develop innovative solutions with those pursuing healthcare careers and those working in the field. Through research, programs, projects, publications, and presentations, LIHH supports the work of The Leslin Healthcare Leadership Foundation and leverages the leader that resides within each person.

We believe that organizational improvement occurs as a natural and organic outcome evolving from personal and professional development of both clinical and non-clinical staff. We embrace inclusion and diversity by creating dialogues across disciplines and opportunities to co-design and co-create workplace environments. The work of LIHH is needed to meet the current and future demands of the healthcare field in the next ten years.

Research is a foundational principle of LIHH. To create a revitalized healthcare system, a system built with purpose-driven staff, an understanding of the literature and work in the field is needed. Our shared learning journey encourages innovative thinking, and our workshops and events allow people to share their stories and experiences of working in the healthcare system and receiving care in it. Through this learning mindset, we hope to ignite a renewed sense of stewardship motivation. Through research, collaboration, and continual self-development, we will co-design, co-create new ways of caring for both staff and patients. This will, in turn, create a person-centered environment where patients and the community receive respectful, equitable, and responsive support and care.

We Envision Sustainable Change

We hold that there are two foundational principles for staff engagement, involvement, and growth and they are trust and motivation. Trust, as we define it, has four elements: respect, responsibility, reliability, resiliency. Trust is the building block for psychology safety and change in the workplace. As we see it motivation is energy and drive to take needed action. For change to occur, staff must be motivated, “energized” to improve both themselves and the workplace.

Our motivational model is drawn from recent work by Dan Pink, author of Drive, which offers a new model of motivation in the workplace. Pink believes that intrinsic motivation is a powerful force and that its three components, autonomy, mastery, and purpose, are accelerants for motivation. Our trust model was developed through our work with staff and after a review of the literature on the role of trust in the workplace. LIHH’s work embraces the motivation-trust model a formulation for change and as the way to personal and professional transformation. When staff are empowered and have agency both personally and professionally, the workplace will emerge as a holistic organization that serves staff and patients.

Our Approach

Our methodology uses reliable assessments, encourages innovative thinking and experimentation, and develops and relies on research to effect change. We partner with leaders throughout organizations in co-creating unique solutions for the care environment. Our work includes interviews and team gatherings, as we learn about the organization from the inside. LIHH envisions a new reality that bridges departments, divisions, and disciplines, a place where the individual’s sense of purpose drives the delivery of care and service and where collaboration fuels change.

Questions We Hope to Answer

In support of the mission, vision, and values of The Leslin Healthcare Leadership Foundation, LIHH uses critical inquiry to deepen understanding and to raise awareness. Its aim focuses on four questions about the healthcare care delivery: What drives people to work in healthcare? How can (re)discovering a sense of purpose transforms the experience of working in healthcare? How does agency and “positive liberty” impact a sense of purpose in work? What role does competency play in motivating staff?

Current Projects:

  • Voices from Within: Healthcare Storytelling to Restore Purpose and Meaning
  • Maslow for a New Century: Humanistic Motivation and Its Impact on Reducing Staff Burnout
  • “Positive Liberty” as a Path for Reinventing Healthcare Workplace Experience
  • Competency Unbounded: Toward New Models of Skill Development in Healthcare
  • Impact of Access, Availability, and Affordability on Health Outcomes:
    • A Longitudinal Study of Co-Design with a Vulnerable and Underserved Community in New York City

Selected Past Projects/Programs:

  • Resilience in Times of Change: COVID 19 and Beyond
  • The Joy of Learning: (Re)Finding Purpose through Self Development
  • Finding and Leveraging Your “Why” – Reflection as a Change Agent
  • The Innovative Self: Shared Purpose as a Springboard for Change
  • Careers in the Next 10 Years: Do Today’s Competencies Matter?
  • The Reflective Self: Finding Meaning and Purpose in Healthcare
  • Health Care Careers: Journey to Personal and Organizational Success