Executive Partner, Transformation Services
Christopher J. Backous, MHA
Chris leads improvement activities, workshops and training for healthcare leaders and providers worldwide. Prior to joining Virginia Mason Institute, he led the integration of lean methods into the design of Virginia Mason’s 350,000-square-foot hospital addition, the first environment of its kind to be built from the ground up using the Virginia Mason Production System®. He also led numerous improvement events using lean tools and methods to improve healthcare processes. Chris is certified in the Virginia Mason Production System® and 3P (Production, Preparation, Process) facilitation.
- Trains, mentors, and coaches executives, process improvement facilitators, and front-line team members across many countries, systems, and service lines.
- As a world expert in leading others beyond what they think is possible, Chris has facilitated hundreds of workshops using 3P methodology to develop breakthrough visioning, new service delivery models, and care facilities with the intention to capture market share, increase quality performance levels, and best align with community needs.
- International speaking engagements to promote lean thinking, healthcare innovation, and whole-system transformation.
- Assesses operational performance and cultural readiness for organizational adoption of a shared process improvement-based management systems using the Virginia Mason Production System® best practices and framework.
- Facilitated strategic goal development, prioritization, and deployment for organizations of varying size and scope of service both in the United States and abroad.
- Installed and mentored the development of organizational continuous improvement approaches and organizational structures with an agility to adapt approach to meet organizational culture and needs.
- Leadership development
- Strategic planning and visioning
- Continuous process improvement
- Lean management
- Virginia Mason Production System®
- Organizational transformation
- 3P (Production, Preparation, Process)
- Facility design
- Retreat facilitation
Articles by Chris
- How an Improvement System is Helping North Shore Physicians Group Manage COVID-19
- Improving Through Crisis: Deploying Improvement Teams When It Matters Most
- Achieving 10-15% Cost Reduction Through Thoughtful Facility Planning
- Why “we have always done it that way” no longer works in health care
- What Is Heijunka in Health Care?
- Measuring Success When the Lean Improvement Work Is Complicated
- Driving Strategic Priorities While Responding to the Global Pandemic
- Leadership Through Crisis Interview Series – Gary Kaplan and Chris Backous
- Leadership Through Crisis Interview Series – Sue Anderson and Eli Quisenberry
- Eliminating Waste Using Lean Facility Design Principles
Education & Certifications
- MHA, University of Washington
- BS, Kinesiology and Exercise Science
- Certified in the Virginia Mason Production System®
- Certified 3P Facilitator
- Certificate in Design Thinking