Leading a Team to Be Its Best Under Pressure

Jeremy S. Richardson

Product Leader: Passionate about Quality and Equity in Education and Healthcare

Resume | LinkedIn

Background

To expand into the prestigious large academic hospital market, we replaced the installed solution of our chief competitor, which led to a number of go-live issues which had not been seen with existing customers.  Reports of problems led us to understand how tight the radiologist/software interaction actually was and how even subtle changes made an impact in customer experience.  

Role I Played

  • Organized daily meetings with various engineering and product personnel, including component/infrastructure teams to synthesize and prioritize problems while driving and tracking isolation, fix, test, and deployment.
  • Engaged closely with customers to understand problems and support their ongoing operations by attending regular meetings, keeping up regular communication, and coordinating with customer success team.
  • Synthesized information and aligned efforts using A3 methodology, doggedly revising problem statements, root cause understandings, action plans, progress tracking, and making efforts visible, while teaching .
  • Got dirty, personally developing and automating high speed, highly efficient log analysis to identify and visualize > 30 new metrics.
  • Communicated progress of high value customer to CTO, CEO.

Results

  • Over 6 months, customer was effectively transitioned opening up the  prestigious large-academic hospital market.
  • Numerous software, process, and training improvements as well as > 20 new UX metrics identified and operationalized through a cloud dashboard, with 5x improvement in responsiveness in key metrics.
  • Customer became a collaborative partner for future feature development and a sales reference.

Key Takeaways

  • Staging releases by orders of magnitude is a tactic for fault tolerance: think 10, 100, 1000 or 10, 1K, 1M.  Always have a roll-back plan
  • Replacing a product is difficult, particularly at the edge, in a fast paced, information driven environment.  Radiology is at the edge of UX: hand-eye-voice coordination and multiple foci of attention make it critical to keep change to a minimum, as muscle memory is a major factor.  Our software was working, when the user could use it without thinking, focused on the x-rays, MRIs, CT scans.
  • Problems often have layers, and sometimes are confounded.  Even highly trained professionals sometimes need to return to first principles to effectively isolate, partition, document, and act on problems.
  • There’s nothing better than telemetry: metrics are life.