Outcomes More Important than Time & Effort

If you're undergoing a surgery, would you rather go to a provider who takes their time on the surgery, or one who does the surgery well? Strange question right? You want someone that takes their time and does it well. Maybe not.

This Forbes article is about a study done to compare the skill of doctors performing surgeries. In the study, a group of surgeons watched videos of other surgeons performing gastric bypass surgery, they then rated them on their skill level.

The differences between the most skilled and least skilled surgeons were remarkable. Comparing the top 25% to the bottom 25%, the study found:
  • The least-skilled surgeons had nearly triple the rate of complications, 14.5% versus 5.2%.
  • The least-skilled surgeons required longer operations, 137 minutes versus 98 minutes.
  • Although death is a very rare outcome for gastric bypass surgery, patients had a higher risk of dying if their operation was done by the least-skilled doctors, 0.26% versus 0.05%.
The fact that peers could tell the most skilled providers vs. the least skilled was no surprise. What jumped out to me was the vast difference in speed. The best outcomes came from the people that did the surgery the fastest. They were the most skilled, therefore the most efficient.

This applies to almost everything in life. I want to, and do value, the time and efforts someone puts into work, but the real value is in the outcome. The best can do it faster AND better.

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