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The Culture of Failure: Exclusive Interview Included

 

 

The key to remaining relevant in a rapidly changing world is to have a drive to continuously learn and adapt. 

 

We strive to communicate that making a mistake can be an opportunity to learn and improve your practice to meet standards. To quote Jeff Miller “a culture of failure is about feedback that helps you make the mark next time.”

 

We interviewed an optician who went through the complaints process for breaching regulation. The optician was conducting services they weren’t certified to do such as sight testing and was misleading patients that they were receiving eye exams.

 

We asked for feedback about what the optician learnt from going through the complaints process.

 

Power Dynamics

 

The optician we talked to has been dispensing for over 20 years and licensed for 6. The optician worked at a family practice, which his father owned. When the College notified the optician that a complaint was submitted about them, they were nervous but not surprised. There was a discrepancy in what their store advertised, versus what they had the authority to practice.

 

“I knew something [a complaint] was going to happen eventually because my dad put the sign up and we argued back and forth for a while. I didn't own the optical so I didn't really have a say. I could tell my parents to take down the sign, but would they listen to my opinion? That's another question.”

 

There can be complex power dynamics that influence situations. It can be difficult to balance those power dynamics with your duty as a health care professional. But at the end of the day your duty is to your patients.

 

“The power struggle is tough… I don't want to jeopardize a person’s health, but [when] working with family you’re [stuck] between a rock and a hard place. I just couldn’t work with my father anymore.”

 

Continuous Learning


 

Some of the key lessons the optician outlined that they learnt from the complaints process were: to further respect the value of licensure, the college, and the regulations, to deliver better patient care, and the importance of continuous learning. There is a purpose to meeting the standards - patient care. In this case, the optician had to go through a process of making a mistake to help them understand that they were not upholding the standards for safe, competent and ethical patient care.

 

“I learned to respect that we [opticians] are licensed, we do have you, the College, and that we have to follow the guidelines; I respect that. Anybody can fall out of the line, but I believe that having the complaint against us put in the back of our minds what we should or should not do. It never hurts to contact the College to ask if what you’re doing is right.”

 

“I don’t look for the almighty sale anymore. If we [opticians] follow the guidelines that the College gives to us, then we can better follow and respect aspects of the customer…Following the standards makes you more of a professional and there's value in that.”

 

Going through a complaints process for the first time can be intimidating. The optician we interviewed stated:

 

“It’s scary, especially when you’ve been in hot water. You look at it going, I don’t want anything to do with this anymore, but it was actually better to talk. People are afraid to call the College, I would have never thought about calling before the complaint, but since then, yeah I'll pick up the phone. It's a smart thing to do because it's all for the patient’s care.”

 

Failure can be intimidating as we live within a culture that equates making mistakes with failure, and failure with negativity. It’s important to understand that failure does not have to be negative. At the College, we believe that failure can be positive; it can help an individual reflect and grow.

           

“I did learn a valuable lesson going through this. I don't regret having a problem with the College. I think it's helped me become a better optician; it made me open my eyes, and see the ethical things. It was scary at first, but I chat with the College staff now. Before the complaint, I wouldn't have talked to the College in a million years. It's helped me. I appreciated what the College did for me.”

 

Making mistakes can be an opportunity to learn, improve your practice, and improve your role as a healthcare professional.  One report published by Scientific America stated that making mistakes matures and alters our brains, and that can make you smarter. 

Hiring for a program manager
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May 10, 2017 |
Program Manager

Job Type: Full time

Salary: Based on experience

Number of Positions Open: 1

Start Date of Employment: preferably June/July 2017

Deadline: June 1, 2017

Website Address: www.cobc.ca

As the program manager, your priority will be to develop and manage current statutory programs to regulate opticians in the public interest. The program manager’s key responsibilities are supporting the College of Opticians of British Columbia’s (COBC) Registrar, Board of Directors, and quality assurance committee. This includes project management, strategic planning, volunteer development and navigating politicized environments with stakeholders.
Program Manager

Job Type: Full time

Salary: Based on experience

Number of Positions Open: 1

Start Date of Employment: preferably June/July 2017

Deadline: June 1, 2017

Website Address: www.cobc.ca

As the program manager, your priority will be to develop and manage current statutory programs to regulate opticians in the public interest. The program manager’s key responsibilities are supporting the College of Opticians of British Columbia’s (COBC) Registrar, Board of Directors, and quality assurance committee. This includes project management, strategic planning, volunteer development and navigating politicized environments with stakeholders.

The COBC’s mandate is to serve and protect the public by regulating opticians. The COBC is responsible for setting and enforcing the standards of opticianry in British Columbia.


Culture
The COBC is a small professional regulatory body with a full-time staff of four people. Professional regulation is evolving so we value team members who are passionate, self-starters, innovative, flexible, and comfortable with the unknown. We are looking for someone who is willing to adapt in an ever-changing environment and look forward to having the opportunity participate in all the organization’s initiatives and administrative functions. To be successful at the COBC, you need to enjoy learning and be open to receiving feedback. The team is also compassionate and empathic. We care about public safety and the impact our policies and programs can have on people.


Skills
The COBC team comes from a variety of backgrounds. We typically find that people are successful in this role when they have:
  • Experience in professional regulation and board governance
  • Experience in program development and/or project management
  • Bachelor or Master degree in political science, public administration or equivalent
  • Passionate about public policy, health legislation and regulation
  • Ability to determine priorities, be self-directed and work with minimal supervision
  • Strong organizational skills with the ability coordinate and prioritize multiple tasks
  • Strong communication skills (written and verbal)
  • Experience training, developing and managing volunteers
  • Excellent stakeholder management skills to resource multiple projects and programs
  • Ability to interact with registrants and strategically understand user-experience for technology and program development
  • Ability to adapt new technology quickly
  • Ability to think critically and analytically

What you will be doing

Planning
  • Planning program and projects to accomplish their strategic goals within constraints such time and resources
  • Generate a work plan for various projects within a program and identify challenges and opportunities
  • Schedule tasks, deadlines, and milestones for stakeholder and volunteers
  • Schedule committee and board meetings and develop agendas according to strategic plan
  • Prepare and write grant proposals

Policy Development
  • Conduct research of issues to present to the Board and committees to develop policy
  • Develop, implement, regularly review, and update policies and procedures
  • Update and maintain professional standards of practice
  • Update and maintain COBC bylaws with legal counsel

Program & Project Management
  • Administer the current continuing education (CE) program including education activity accreditation and program support for registrants
  • Execute the new continuing competency program (will replace current CE program) including educating registrants and stakeholders on new requirements, managing registrant learning plans, and accrediting education activities
  • Develop tools to support the new continuing competency program
  • Monitor and evaluate progress on programs and projects
  • Coordinate program and project development with external project contractors/consultants
  • Manage projects to meet deadlines and objectives
  • Coordinate the annual general meeting, board meetings, board elections and committee meetings
  • Write reports and meeting minutes to keep volunteers and stakeholders informed
  • Prepare the annual report

Volunteer Management
  • Recruit, train, and support the development of board and committee members
  • Address volunteer concerns and providing guidance to volunteers
  • Prepare board and committee chairs to facilitate meetings
  • Coordinate volunteers and contractors for program and projects

Administration

It is a small office so all team members are expected to help with registrants and administrative functions as needed.


Contact Information:

Please direct enquiries, resumes, and cover letters stating your desired salary* to:

Connie Chong

Registrar

recruitment (at) cobc.ca

(Due to the volume of applications, we will not entertain phone calls)

*Cover letters that do not state desired salary will not be reviewed.



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