Think teamwork for telehealth success

Shayne Stenhouse1, Carolyn Bourke2

1 The Telehealth Service, Darling Downs Hospital & Health Service, Mt Lofty Nursing Home, Rifle Range Road, Toowoomba, 4350,

2 The Telehealth Service, Darling Downs Hospital & Health Service, Mt Lofty Nursing Home, Rifle Range Road, Toowoomba, 4350,


The current Telehealth team for Darling Downs Hospital & Health Service (DDHHS) has been together for the past 19 months.  We have reflected on why we have been successful. How do we measure our success? So our discussion will be reflecting on us as a team in a change management environment.

Each Team Member Has Emotional Intelligence -Effective teams possess not only technical skills, but also emotional intelligence. In fact, studies have shown that emotional intelligence is more important than the IQ of each team member. It turns out that if individuals are socially aware, the whole group puts in better quality work.

A Good Mix of Introverts and Extroverts-The balance introversion and extroversion can affect how teams work. As a society, many often think of extroverts as doers, go-getters, superior team-players. Though the tide towards valuing individual strengths regardless of extroversion or introversion may be changing, extroverts are still often perceived as being more competent team members as they seem to get along with others more easily.

They Share and Understand Their Common GoalsThere is a need to have common goals and shared ambitions in order to be as efficient as possible.

They Make Time for Humor – Humor might not be such an obvious factor in the effectiveness of a team, but actually humor inspires trust and intimacy —which can lead to better team interactions

They Communicate Proactively – Communication is obviously important, but what really matters is proactive communication. Proactive communication can be materialized in four ways:

  • Team members provide information before being asked.
  • They provide support and assistance before being asked.
  • They take team initiative by providing guidance and making suggestions to other team members.
  • They provide updates, creating situational awareness for other team members.

Strong Leadership at the Helm- Even when all the team members fit in with the above, teams still need great leadership. The role of the leader isn’t only to set an example and to motivate team members, but also to provide effective feedback and to nurture the soft skills mentioned above.

As Change Agents we must have the following:

  1. Clear Vision
  2. Patient yet persistent
  3. Asks tough questions
  4. Knowledgeable and leads by example
  5. Strong relationships built on trust

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