Quality improvement teams are ideally made up of 5 to 8 members. Members are chosen because they work in, own, supply, have knowledge of, or receive benefit from the work process under study. Team members all share responsibility for the effectiveness of the team and participate in all aspects of the team’s work, in meetings and outside of meetings.
The leader of a team is generally the person who is recognized as the owner of the work process under study. The leader coordinates and directs the work of the team as it studies the process and implements improvements. The leader often meets individually with the facilitator to plan for the work of the team. The leader is also a member and contributes ideas, interprets data, and participates with other members in making team decisions.
The facilitator is not a member of the team but a person outside who serves as a consultant or improvement advisor. The role of the facilitator can be thought of in terms of the up-front work he or she performs with the leader and the team (planning, teaching, designing) and the extra set of “sharp eyes” the facilitator brings to help the team monitor, control, and improve its own processes.
SPECIALIZED MEETING ROLES
In process improvement team meetings, there are two specialized meeting roles which are rotated so that on one person is assigned these tasks for every meeting.
The Recorder helps the team maintain a record of its work by logging in significant content on a flip chart in front of the team. When the meeting moves rapidly, two recorders may be used.
The Timekeeper helps the team manage time by calling out the remaining minutes on each agenda item at intervals determined by the team. Although it is the entire team’s responsibility to manage time, the timekeeper provides structure for this process.
OTHER TEAM ROLES
A Family/Patient Representative lends a helpful view in process changes from the customer perspective.
A Management Sponsor or Idea Champion builds strength to the implementation of the team’s work internally, to the organization.
A Technical Consultant may be called in to address specialty areas the team needs to know about.
Other Special Guests may visit the team to provide special help, without becoming a full member of the team.