The headline this week which inspired some thought was: Surgical checklists could cut malpractice claims I have had a few iterations to my professional life. But in each and every one, I can say that utilizing check (or task) lists was key to success in all of them. My introduction to religiously maintaining and utilizing task lists came with a subscription to the Franklin Planner. Many moons ago, an employer insisted that all workers undergo training from Franklin-Covey and make use of a Franklin Planner. While I had used task lists before, with the Franklin Planner, the daily task list is the key to getting things done. At the end of each day, you had to write down for the next day the tasks which had not been accomplished (plus any new ones). That was painful, and always was an incentive to achieve whatever one could in the calendar day. Placing a check next to an accomplished task was a great feeling, no doubt releasing endorphins that pleased the brain! Checklists in a group setting is even more key. With diverse members, with diverse responsibilities, a shared checklist can help keep a team on course and able to get things done. As the story points out, in the case of healthcare delivery, it can mean the difference between life and death.


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