Margo was quite humble as one of the first keynote speakers of the APC Annual Conference in Anaheim last month. She said that she was (only) a staff chaplain at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis, MN and if she and her team could do these things, then any (mere) chaplain could too.
They decided to lead by embracing the data and articulating their value...the value that we chaplains bring to healthcare. Data is the language of ACA / Obamacare; it is all about patient-centered care and patient satisfaction.
Chaplaincy is about really listening to people
What does that have to do with Stanford's D-School? Today I Lyfted one of their professors. She described a process she uses for her stressed-out, high-achieving, goal-focused students - and not just design students. The exercise is called an Odyssey where they draft three (hopefully) very different versions of their 5 year plans, then present it to a small group - with rules of engagement.
"They really listen to the speaker and keep the energy on them by asking good questions." She said.
"That is so interesting, tell me more." I said while driving her to her early morning workout at Alta Plaza. It was before 7 am on a rare (these days) foggy morning in San Francisco.
"They ask questions, in a non-critical way - like its their problem and they need it explained to them."
" Oh, can you unpack that a bit?" I asked.
"OK, it is like this, say a student wants to go and work on a Organic farm in Switzerland...a listening student might say...'Oh, Organic farming. I am curious what it is about Switzerland that calls you? I am not sure I understand." She took a breath. It was obvious she really liked what she did and was good at it, too.
I said as much to her, too. She agreed.
"A teacher is really a holy profession. You never know what impact you will have on a life or a generation...you just put it out there and hope some of the questions and the good listening helps them 'unravel life's complications.'"
I said it like a chaplain...but also like a designer because they have to listen well, too.
on a Chaplain's life