Leading in a Healthcare Accreditation Organization with Shawn Griffin, MD

The Healthcare QualityCast

Leading in a Healthcare Accreditation Organization with Shawn Griffin, MD

December 7, 2021

Leading in a Healthcare Accreditation Organization with Shawn Griffin, MD

Meet our guest, Dr. Shawn Griffin, President and CEO at URAC, Washington DC. URAC is an accrediting organization that verifies the quality of healthcare organizations throughout the industry. Dr. Shawn is also a Family Physician with a background in the role of Chief Medical Information Officer and experience creating quality improvement projects.

In this episode, I sit with Dr. Shawn as he shares his work influencing quality on a global scale, as well as the inspirational events that led him through this journey.  

Top Takeaways

• [00:14] As a leader it’s important that you know and understand your team, in order to approach management like a coach and maximize the skill set of everyone on the team. 

• [13:30] As you push forward in your career, look for opportunities that will put you in a unique spot, and make you uncomfortable, and your breakthroughs will come. 

• [14:06] Lessons from failure: “You can be doing everything right, and still suffer a setback” 

• [21:48] “You should make friends”; because being a resource for people is a great way to network. However, make sure that you are transferring your contacts to a device that you would keep if your business shuts down tomorrow. It is also important to copy all your work contacts, print them out, and take them home every year to preserve them. 

• [23:22] Listeners are advised to update their resumes at least once a year, to keep track of their progress.

• [23:50] Building intimate teams: You need to understand the skills and personality tendencies of the people you’re working with to know how to deal with them. 

• [38:20] Current changes in healthcare: There will be continued support for telemedicine, as the pandemic has forced innovation and things cannot go back to the way they were before the pandemic. Additionally, attention needs to be paid to policymaking which is becoming more of a focus in creating a positive impact in healthcare.

• [44:00] The importance of engaging with your local and state regulators and legislators is incredibly underappreciated. They listen to someone from their community rather than an expert they don’t know.

• [45:10] Many of the standards used for the Covid-19 vaccine were first written up by URAC years ago and it has been inspiring to relate with the person that wrote them. Dr. Shawn also inspires workers by getting to know them and relating beyond the office work they do. 

• [47:11] Best career advice: Know what you know, know what you don’t know, don’t be afraid to be uncomfortable as long as what you’re being uncomfortable for is worth it.

• [47:27] A successful work habit: Whatever your job is, you need to understand it well, and you need to understand what’s required to understand it well. 

• [50:55] Dr. Shawn’s message to himself; focus on work that’s meaningful. 

• [52:35] Final comments from Dr. Shawn: If you’re working on quality, you’re doing noble work. Take time to take care of yourself after this tough year, no job is greater than your value.

Key Quotes:

“Know what you know and know what you don’t know and never try and fool people”

“Accountability should never be shaming”

“Regulation sets the bar for safety, and accreditation sets the bar for quality”

“You want the world to be fair… and sometimes it’s not”

“Every setback can be a reset”

“If I am wildly successful, what would I accomplish?”

“Stats give you details but stories give you memories”

“If you don’t understand what makes me a person, then I don’t think you’re going to care about what makes me a leader”

“If you don’t take care of yourself, you can’t take care of your job”


Find | Dr. Shawn Griffin 

LinkedIn – Dr. Shawn Griffin 

Email – sgriffin@urac.or

Send in a voice message:

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Proudly supported by:

Creating Healthcare IT with Cliff Illig, Co-founder of Cerner Corporation This episode is hosted by Day Zero Advisory Council Member Donald Trigg, Former President, Cerner Corporation.