Shared Mental Models Necessary for Culture Change

We can learn so much from neurobiology (how our brains actually do work), teamwork studies from the military, and symbolic systems or the world of information systems. Teams in combat can’t afford to be out of synch any more than healthcare professionals can, because in either situation, death or disability can result.  As we developed the RROHC 10 steps or best practices, we knew from empirical application of education at 160+ hospitals or HC organizations, that everyone must have a mental model before they can apply the ideas in their work. We also combined  critical thinking theories that prescribed application of concepts and models to create productive memory and the templates for clinical judgment.  From Case Western and the College of Wm and Mary (Druskat, Pescosolido), shared mental models are “theories in use” or “shared cognition” that can be used with complex adaptive systems to aid with both explicit and implicit messaging among team members.   The psychological ownership, continuous learning, and “heedful interrelating” allows business and psychology to aide us as well as the military in better teamwork. 

Now to the world of Info systems:   If we have shared goals, we then have “joint intention,” which works well in environments where teams must “filter and fuse an overwhelming amount of information and make critical decisions under time constraints.”  The “shared understanding of team structure” (different roles) enable a team member todevelop a higher level of abstraction about capabilities, expertise, and responsibilities.” (Yen, Fan, Sun, Chen et al, Penn State, Volz, R, Texas A and M).

People at work MUST understand the framework of “what does a day in the life of an expert look like here?” “What is expected of me to be a part of this culture?”  Sounds like RROHC to me!

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