Find someone who is willing and able to work with your needs.
If you’re already seeking outside counsel for your business or organization, I applaud you. It’s not always easy to ask for help, let alone know what you need.
If you are struggling to answer the question of how to find a consultant that fits your needs well, I’d like to share the story of one of our clients, Megan Haase, and Mosaic Medical.
Megan Haase is a nurse practitioner by training. Today, she leads as CEO of Mosaic Community Health, a nonprofit community health center providing quality care for all in the Central Oregon Communities they serve. Mosaic has been awarded HRSA’s highest rating (5 Stars) for clinical excellence and innovation for a primary care clinic in Oregon, granted to less than 5% of clinics.
Mosaic Community Health operates more than a dozen health centers, serving a population of more than 27,000 individuals and employs nearly 400 people. For three decades, the Mosaic Team has provided high-quality, integrated, culturally appropriate healthcare to Central Oregonians, regardless of life circumstances. The work they do every day truly changes lives.
What stands out in Moementum’s partnership with Mosaic over the past seven years is the roadmap that Megan, as CEO, provides for others who seek outside counsel.
Moementum, Inc. has provided Megan and other senior leaders with 1:1 and team coaching and extensive consulting services to the organization. Together, we’ve built a valuable partnership based on courage and transparency that we hope inspires your organizational journey.
Understand your own needs.
Before meeting anyone at Mosaic Medical, they were doing employee feedback surveys. While imperfect–they aimed to survey their staff every quarter but often got one or two good surveys in a year–this feedback process gave the leadership invaluable clarity in directing our work.
From day one of our conversation, Megan and the leadership team knew what their weak spots were. From these employee surveys, the team knew they had some roadblocks with their culture and structure. Specifically, they knew from staff and leaders that the organization’s identity felt inconsistent.
It wasn’t clear to everyone what “Mosaic” stood for, which resulted in low trust, misalignment, and wasted energy and effort. Additionally, Megan and her team knew that cultural impacts were at play that made Mosaic’s workplace challenging, impacting morale and engagement. Culture mattered at Mosaic from the beginning. Megan said, “I feel very passionate about [culture] to ensure we have the best work environment to function.”
Megan and the Mosaic team’s clarity directed our work. It made it clear for us to strategize which interventions could help in specific areas to gain traction quickly—the team knew where they were hurting and that the approaches they had tried were not helping.
Before you seek counsel, do the groundwork to gain baseline knowledge based on what matters to your organization and where you feel pain. (Btw, a good consultant should be able to help you do this).
Understand your own needs.
The following piece is crucial, which I think Megan demonstrates very well. You have to be 100% confident that the consultant you’re working with can meet your needs.
Megan knew what Mosaic Community Health System needed. It started with structural changes (how accountability flowed)—redefining job titles, clarifying relationships, and dialing responsibilities across roles. This work relies heavily on knowledge of the research field of organizational development. Megan knew this and knew we were a good fit.
She said, “Moe had the expertise [we needed] in the organizational development space. And of course, she had the expertise working with organizations on advancing culture.”
As consultants, we all have different backgrounds and comfort areas. Early in my career, I wasn’t always very good at turning clients down if we were misfit. Now that I’ve been doing this for a while, I do turn down clients if I sense I’m not the perfect fit for them. Not every consultant does this, so you must have the courage to ask the hard questions and see the truth behind them.
Find someone who understands the demands and pressures in your organization.
Every organization is unique. While some principles and methods tend to work across organizations and fields, how those methods get applied is always a carefully balanced implementation specific to the organization.
You have to find a consultant who can understand the needs and pressures of your organization.
How will you know if someone gets you? The best way is with your intuition. If you feel seen and held by your conversation, that’s a good starting point. For Megan, it felt like an intuitive knowing. “I knew Moe knew this stuff. She wasn’t just taking in information and relaying it. I could tell she lives and breathes this, so when working with individuals or teams, it’s like she’s looked at the research and made it part of her DNA.”
There are some other tips, too. One is to see whether the consultant regularly integrates feedback or surveys into their work. At Moementum, for example, we often help our clients implement their employee feedback surveys or work with them to design and implement listening sessions with their staff. We did both with Mosaic and had good results with each. “Moe did her own listening sessions throughout our system. So before we got into the structure work, she met with most of our leaders at the time and got direct input.”
The consultant can’t do the work for you. Only you can.
Some business leaders hire a consultant to do the work for them. This may work for a copywriting consulting or finance consultant. But for a consult you’ve hired to help reshape the people and culture aspects of your business, only you can do the work. And you have to live with the consequences. What does that look like?
Megan demonstrated this well in all of the little ways she and her team have picked up and carried forward the interventions Moementum launched for Mosaic. Take, for example, a three-day leadership training we did years ago. This training (now best represented in our signature leadership development program, The Leading People Program™) covers proven frameworks and models for leadership. It has remained a constant at Mosaic, repeated annually for new leaders.
We do a lot in our workshops like the LPP, but at the end of the day, all of that programming is nothing without how the client picks it up. And Megan and her team did. “After one of our one-day intensives, we produced with Moe a document that we still use for leaders today, which we call the Leadership Manifesto. It has a set of words describing how we lead. It was very, very carefully crafted, where each word was analyzed to make sure that the value statements really reflected what came out of that day. We still use that in leadership meetings and trainings today.”
Behavior change is hard, but with a robust system in place and with the accountability of a team, it becomes easier. So be sure you’re ready to lead the charge with whatever initiative you’re looking to improve with the help of a consultant.
Harnessing Purpose to Build Culture
At the end of our interview, Megan told me about how well-positioned Mosaic Medical is for the future: “I think, we really are set up to live the mission, vision, and values and the critical purpose that we serve in the community. Our mission and vision is available to us in a really powerful way. But that alone can’t create the best culture. You also have to do the work to really keep practicing how we lead and support people in our organization to create an environment for them to be at their best—working with each other, working with the patients, and working with the community.”
Megan’s sentiments encapsulate the journey of Mosaic Medical and our work together. While mission and vision provide a strong foundation, achieving an optimal culture requires consistent effort, reflection, and strategic guidance. In Mosaic’s journey with us, they realized that recognizing their strengths wasn’t enough; they also had to identify growth areas and act upon them. With outside consultation, they could delve deeper, refine their processes, and ensure their organizational culture was genuinely representative of their core values.
While passion and purpose can drive an organization forward, refining its inner workings and understanding its people dynamics is essential.
This case study demonstrates that seeking expert counsel, having self-awareness, and being committed to continuous improvement can shape an organization’s culture in profound ways. As leaders, the challenge isn’t just in understanding our mission but in translating that mission into daily practices that resonate with every team member. Through collaboration, introspection, and guided change, we can build organizations that don’t just serve the community but also foster internal environments where everyone thrives.
If you’re considering seeking guidance with your people strategy take a look at our offerings at Moementum or schedule a free consult today.