Integrating the RC Survey into Interventions

Improving Work Processes with Relational Coordination

Integrating the RC Survey into Interventions
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This advanced workshop will help you learn how to use the Relational Coordination (RC) Survey in interventions to improve work processes and collaboration across the continuum from small co-located work groups to virtual teams to whole organizations and inter-organizational consortia. If you have experience in group facilitation or process consulting and want to take your understanding of RC to a higher level, we invite you to join us. This program will also help you prepare for the RC Certification

Effective teamwork takes more than a group of individuals skillfully carrying out their specialized tasks. It requires interdependence: the ability of the team members to understand how their work processes intersect and to respond to each other’s changing needs and circumstances. What’s more, they need to be able to do this on their own in real time, under conditions of performance pressure and uncertainty, and without waiting for direction from a supervisor. This is the relational core of teamwork and, at a higher level of scale, of successful system function.

Brandeis University professor Jody Hoffer Gittell named this quality of high-performing teams “Relational Coordination” and developed a theory to explain how it impacts performance and how organizations upoort or undermine its development. She also developed a survey instrument to measure it. Her groundbreaking research has demonstrated that teams with high scores on the Relational Coordination Survey achieve higher quality, work more efficiently, better satisfy their customers or patients, and enjoy more worker satisfaction and resilience. 

Since 2009, physician-consultant-researcher Tony Suchman has been working with Jody to develop practical work applications of RC theory and the RC Survey, creating a powerful interventional approach for improving work processes, fostering positive work environments and improving performance. To share what they’ve been learning, they have developed this program for organizational leaders and both internal and external consultants.

Program Description

The program is in three parts. It begins with some brief independent study that presents foundational knowledge about the Relational Coordination model and its research base. Part 2 consists of a 1.5 day workshop that provides instruction and practice in defining work processes to be studied, setting up the survey, interpreting it, sharing back the survey results and planning follow up activities that both foster RC and embody its principles of partnership and engagement. The third part is a personal one-hour consultation within 18 months of the workshop to help you as you plan or conduct an actual intervention using the RC Survey.


Jody Hoffer Gittell is a professor of management at Brandeis University’s Heller School for Social Policy and Management, and director of the Relational Coordination Research Collaborative. She has written dozens of articles, as well as books The Southwest Airlines Way: Using the Power of Relationships to Achieve High Performance; Up In the Air: How the Airlines Can Improve Performance by Engaging Their Employees; and Sociology of Organizations: Structures and Relationships.  In High Performance Healthcare: Using the Power of Relationships to Achieve Quality, Efficiency and Resilience, she presents her findings from ten years of research in the healthcare industry. In her newest book Transforming Relationships for High Performance:  The Power of Relational Coordination, she explores the multi-interventional process that enables sustainable scalable change. Before joining the faculty at Brandeis University, Dr. Gittell received her PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management and taught at the Harvard Business School.

Anthony L Suchman is a practicing physician, Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of Rochester, and senior consultant and founder of Relationship Centered Health Care. Drawing upon diverse interests and experiences, his work focuses on improving human interaction and collaborative decision-making across all levels of healthcare – from the front lines of patient care to the executive suite and boardroom. His most recent book, Leading Change in Healthcare: Transforming Organizations Using Complexity, Positive Psychology and Relationship-Centered Care, has recently been published by Radcliffe Publishing. Dr. Suchman received his MD degree from Cornell University and an MA in Organizational Change from the University of Hertfordshire.

Additional Details

Participants' Comments

“It was a very useful workshop that has broadened my understanding of the use of relational coordination in the workplace and the techniques for facilitating the intervention."
“It was a pleasure to see two very skilled facilitators — working together in a highly professional manner, making more synergy.”
“I liked the organization of the workshop, the knowledge exchanged and the open-mindedness of all the attendees.”
"I learned to more clearly determine the focus of the survey and align with client context and goals."
“It was useful to learn how to interpret the data and consider appropriate interventions.”
“The review of the survey development process was critical for me."
"It was helpful to be able to work on interpreting different sets of results.”
“Doing the role plays helped me helped me recognize how I might really enact the process and the barriers/realities I might encounter.”
“The course was very concrete; the combination of examples and evidence based knowledge made it an eye-opener in many ways.”
“I valued the discussions of real practices; structural problems.”
“I appreciated the engaging nature of the learning environment fostered by the instructors and the participants.”

Certification on the Relational Coordination Survey

This workshop can help individuals prepare for Certification on the Relational Coordination Survey. The topics covered in this program closely parallel the areas of knowledge and skill that are assessed in the certification process. This workshop is not a required prerequisite for certification, and completion of this course does not qualify participants for certification.  This workshop and the certification process are separate and distinct programs. More information about the Certification Program is available at


The next workshop will be April 27-28, 2018 at Brandeis University/The Heller School for Social Policy and Management In Waltham, MA. It will include self-study to be completed in advance and an individual consultation to be scheduled subsequently.

Workshop Location: To be announced
Course Hours: Day one: 8:00-4:30 pm; Day Two: 8:00-12:30
Hotel Options: See brochure for hotel options

Fee Information

Included in the registration fee of $2,650 are the independent study materials, the course syllabus, lunch on Day 1, breakfast and lunch on Day 2 and a personal hour-long consultation with Tony Suchman within 18 months of the workshop. You can register here or download the registration form and mail it in with a check for your registration fee. Please contact the hotel separately for accommodations. (info under Location above)

There are discounts for groups from the same organization. A 33% discount is available to full time graduate students. A 10% discount is available to RCRC (Relational Coordination Research Collaborative) partners. For this course only, a special rate of $300 is available for RCRC Student Partners. Please contact us if you’d like to arrange for any of these discounts. 

We will process workshop applications in the order in which they are received. If you need to cancel after you register we cannot offer refunds for workshop registrations but you can transfer your fee to another course or to another person. 

Sponsor a Workshop

Contact us if you'd like to sponsor a course at your organization.

For More Information

Contact Tony Suchman at or call 585.721.9187.

Thanks for your interest and we hope to see you at our next workshop!