Healthcare costs have been soaring every year so fast that President Barack Obama once said, “By a wide margin, the biggest threat to our nation’s balance sheet is the skyrocketing cost of healthcare. It’s not even close.” In The Cost Conundrum, Dr. Atul Gawande described how some doctors at McAllen, Texas turn a population of twelve thousand dollars income per capital into one of fifteen thousand dollars per enrollee in Medicare, almost twice the national average.
The doctors’ business drive is only one internal cause. Middlemen’s profit sharing is one external cause. The non-health cause that contributes to about 70% of primary clinical visits for stress-related health issues and the limited way how businesses and individuals meet challenges and stay healthy also give those white-coat wolfs legitimate reasons and endless opportunities to suck the blood out of individuals, businesses, and economic systems. In addition, not all doctors have the best knowledge and problem-solving.
We can not only cut down healthcare costs but also improve healthcare quality and productivity at the same time. We can not only cut down today’s healthcare costs but also anticipate development needs in coming challenges, make wise investments and take early action. Our success started at the clinic in 2004 when I first invented the 6Q Approach. Here are 5 main steps.
Meet challenges with the Right Tools
A study at Toronto University Family Medicine found that 70% of their primary visits are stress related. Most stress-related health issues are directly related to the lack of the right tools to meet the challenge, relax and restore self, for example, insomnia, heart attack, diabetes, obesity, and fast aging. McAllen could have heavy drinking sixty percent higher than the national average because many individuals in that area have lower education and fewer opportunities, so they drink to achieve a fast relief. Smoking and food are other common antidepressants. Then obesity and others associated diseases follow, such as heart attack, diabetes, and hypertension.
Some doctors and hospitals do not want their patients to find their missing tool—they want their patients to keep on coming back. Some doctors indulge their patients with heart failure not to sleep and eat right so they can have “a new heart” quicker. Until individuals can find their missing tools, the same issues often keep on coming back and getting worse. Because doctors and hospitals are often paid by visits and procedures, medical treatments can become expensive and endless symptom relieves with legitimate reasons. As people go to the clinic or hospital more, more complications can emerge, which require further treatments. Heart disease is a good example.
-Limited Talent Management Also Contributes to Health Issues
The best way for talent to minimize stress-related health issues is to stay on the right track (avoid unsuitable challenges) and meet challenges with the right tools. However, people often lack the right tools to meet challenges, especially those resulted from non-IQ and non-EQ sources.
Behaviors can reflect the underlying structure in different environments but often change as environments changes. Thus, insignificant weaknesses in that environment will not surface but can impact the next project. We call the weakness Relative Weakness. The 360-degree evaluation can only collect behavior observation AFTER a person gets into the specific environment. “Shoot Burnout, Save His Job!” is a good example. Individuals with high EQ can control what others can observe at the workplace and alter 360-degree evaluation results. A 2016 Deloitte survey found that only 13% of companies believe they are building effective global leaders.
Jamie Dimon, CEO of JP Morgan, repeatedly said at top MBAs that individuals ought to take care of themselves and not to expect their company to babysitter them. However, many people cannot manage self efficiently due to poor knowledge and then develop or worsen their health issues, for example, stroke and fast aging.
Some people go to the hospital too late, which makes a small problem big, big problem impossible. One couple called 911 after their son got choked. By the time when an ambulance arrived, the boy already died as the human brain can only tolerate no oxygen for 6-7 minutes. The couple should have removed the foreign object and started CPR (cardiac pulmonary resuscitation) while waiting for the ambulance. In heart attack and stroke, the window time to dissolve the clots is only a few hours. However, many people miss the precious hours and have a feeble recovery.
Self-management can be the most difficult task in the world because of human nature and knowledge base, starting from decision-making to execution, including time management, teamwork, relaxation, restoration, etc. Many individuals miss some tools along the process, which can impede their success and destroy their health.
NOT to Rely on the Hospitals
Not every doctor and hospital has the best knowledge or keeps the best interest of their patients in mind. Some doctors only want to use their specialty to solve ALL problems. For example, a Psychiatrist wants to treat a heart attack by easing a patient’s mind, and a Surgeon likes to use a knife instead of preventive care. Some physicians have limited knowledge and creativity. Many disabilities and deaths result from improper treatments or unnecessary treatments.
In 1997, my mother and I were rear-ended in a tragic auto accident. She was put on a ventilator since she could not breathe on her own. About 5 weeks later, her doctor diagnosed that she would be ventilator-dependent for the rest of her life since she did not improve. My mom refused to live on the ventilator, so I had to be the one to discontinue her lifeline. I decided to exam her myself before I took the final step. To my surprise, I found her diaphragm was intact, which meant that she could breathe by raising and relaxing her diaphragm (abdominal breath). I taught her the new way of breathing. She got off the ventilator in three days. Later she regained her independence through both the Eastern and Western medicine.
I suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury in the accident. Almost all experts predicted that I could not recover. In the meantime, we got zero compensation from the courts, including the US Supreme Court. After I cried for a whole night, I decided to recover myself and apply for a medical license. In addition to the Eastern and Western medicine, I studied hard, joined all kinds of events and tried everything I could found. Thank God, I have passed all 3 steps of medical license examinations and received many excellent letters of recommendations at the clinics.
Each person’s 6 quotients are integrated, which is why health issues can have non-health causes, and poor IQ and EQ performance can result from non-IQ and non-EQ sources. By knowing individual 6Q structures, we can anticipate when relative weaknesses will become significant, which strengthen can be irrelevant, so businesses and individuals can make wise investments.
In the meantime, healthcare issues among employees often can reflect the missing tools in leadership and talent management, for example, recruitment, talent tasking, and institutional strategy. By knowing the development needs, businesses and individuals can take early action. For more information, please visit “4 Keys to Optimizing Corporate Leadership Development” and “How to Be an Exceptional CEO?”
Here are some common mistakes.
* Using one tool for All Issues
* Stay out of their maximum comfort(aptitude) zone
* Tripped up by relative weaknesses
* Unable to utilize resources
* Run out of gas (energy)
* Inability to handle setbacks and failures
* Insufficient relaxations and restoration techniques
* Go to the hospital only for stress-related health problems.
Human work, life, and health are integrated. As long as health issues can have non-health causes, health management is NOT equal to hospital management. We cannot rely on hospitals and medicine alone to stay healthy nor use IQ, EQ, and behavior tools only to meet challenges and avoid stress-related health issues. Partial approaches only offer legitimate reasons for greedy doctors and hospitals to suck the blood out of customers and economic systems and destroy the competitiveness of businesses and nations and bankrupting millions of families.
The efficient solution is to link health management with talent management, remove the root causes of endless symptom relieves and empower individuals to participate in personal health management and utilize health resources wisely. Individuals can get well quickly, including the same day, with the minimum re-occurrence like the cases above. Businesses can optimize productivity and minimize absenteeism and healthcare costs. In addition, both can anticipate development needs, including health needs in coming challenges, make wise investments, and take early action. Solving problems around healthcare alone is inefficient. Unlike health insurance companies, businesses do not have the conflict of interests in paying for personal development.
It is time to look at the big picture, think differently and target issues with the right tools. By doing so, we can not only cut down healthcare costs but also improve healthcare quality and productivity at the same time and help more businesses become an employer of choice.
About the Author
Bin Yang is the Managing Director of The Prince Synergy (www.theprincesynergy.com), a leading consulting firm that focuses on empowering leaders and elites to be their best and stay healthy (TPS Dream & Power) and building exceptional leaders to strengthen society (TPS Executive Academy). She is the author of What Stops Leaders from Good to Great. For more information or to schedule an interview, lecture, or appointment, please contact 310-668-1828.
Business owner Mr. T was admitted to the hospital again for heart disease. Although his father had heart disease, many of his siblings were healthy. Mr. T enjoyed his work and family and had a good business. However, he could only sleep 4-5 hours whenever something new coming to him, and insomnia often lasted for days. He usually went to the hospital soon after. His cardiologist told him that he would need open heart surgery or a heart transplant that cost $780,000~1,200,000 if his condition got worse. No action towards his insomnia.
Did the cardiologist miss anything? Most people would say no. However, the answer is wrong.
Good sleep is critical to Mr. T’s recovery. The best solution is not to give him sleeping pills but to identify why he could not handle new events, teach him the skills he missed or choose the right alternatives. This part is beyond traditional healthcare and leadership tools.
The Executive 6Q Assessment found that Mr. T had development needs in daily self-management, from work, relaxation, and sleep hygiene. No leadership, career and other significant issues. After a series of exercises, Mr. T could sleep well. Then his heart disease stopped getting worse, lab test results came back better, and his hospitalization dropped from 4-5 times/year to 1 time in the first year. Then he could remain stable on medication.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women, is often directly stress-related or associated with the lack of the right tools to meet challenges that can be anything. In the above case, the challenge is to sleep well after new event emerges. Without getting to the root causes, treatments will advance quickly and become endless expensive symptom relieves, and create more high-cost claims. This principle applies to 70% of primary clinical visits that are stress-related.
Accidents happen all the time, whether it is an auto accident or workplace accident. Many high-cost health claims, disabilities and deaths result from improper health tools or health tools alone. Individuals need to think independently. Below were personal stories of our Founder after her mother and she were rear-ended in a tragic auto accident in 1997.
Get off Ventilator, Regain Independence
My mother was put on a ventilator in ICU since she could not breathe on her own. About 5 weeks later, her doctor diagnosed that she would be ventilator-dependent for the rest of her life since she did not improve. My mom refused to live on the ventilator, so I had to be the one to discontinue her lifeline. I decided to exam her myself before I took the final step. To my surprise, I found her diaphragm was intact, which meant that she could breathe by raising and relaxing her diaphragm (abdominal breath). I taught her the new way of breathing. She got off the ventilator in three days. Later she regained her independence through both the Eastern and Western medicine.
My mother stayed in the hospital for about 7 weeks, including 5 weeks in ICU. Her medical bills were close to $300,000. How much money was wasted in ICU? Most doctors know abdominal breath that human use in childhood. However, they cannot link the concept with adults nor utilize it to save life and money.
Beat Harvard Univ. in Full Recovery of Traumatic Brain Injury
I suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury in the auto accident. Almost all experts predicted that I could not recover, including an expert from Harvard University. In the meantime, we got zero compensation from the courts, including the US Supreme Court. After I cried for a whole night, I decided to apply for a medical license to recover myself.
I tried everything I could found to regain my abilities, two of which were learning and Eastern medicine. Thank God, I have passed all 3 steps of medical license examinations in 2.5 years, found my residency, invented the 6Q approach in 2004, and then founded The Prince Synergy in 2006. The full recovery of Traumatic Brain Injury is still impossible to Harvard University today.
My hospital bill was insignificant. How much would I have lost had I listened to those experts or struggled within Western Medicine alone?
Mr. M, the CEO of a large construction company, was excellent in construction work and devoted to his job. However, he was impatient with his staff’s “silly” questions and wanted the team to follow his development model. He also liked to wear his college outfits wherever he went. As a result, his chairman concerned his manner and image could cost their business opportunities.
The Executive 6Q Assessment found that Mr. M was excellent in schools, from elementary to university. He had a healthy Ego and was sharp in decision-making, learning, customer needs satisfaction, etc. However, he was weak in emotional control and expression, poor Public Relationship awareness, and had limited conflict management skills and leadership styles.
Bring Internal Charm Out
We recommended custom “Be Charming, Win Heart and Minds” to address his issues. Mr. M quickly understood the gap between his self-awareness and others’ perception, his natural skills and professional levels, and developed the skills and styles needed. In less than three months, he won the hearts and minds of his staff back.
Should a CEO be charming? Of course! Our CEO studies have found that no CEO can achieve desirable results if others cannot perceive his or her leadership properly. People skills or physical appearance alone cannot make a charming CEO, not to mention an exceptional CEO. Being charming also means less conflicts and resistances to handle and more hearts and minds to win.
Most CEOs do 1 of 2 things: (1) speak to other CEOs and ex-CEOs and (2) talk to a professional coach. The first can advise Mr. M based on their experiences, and the second mainly encourages Mr. M. to find his own solutions or give him some EQ tools and behavior modification. Neither could solve Mr. M’s problems quickly. For more discussion, please read Identify Your Missing Software, Go from Good to Great Efficiently Chapter 5.
Should a CEO Be Charming, Win Hearts and Minds?