I believe that teamwork, collaboration, mutual respect and support, and constant communication are the keys to successful leadership. You must surround yourself with trustworthy, talented, independent and ethical people who share your vision of the future. Then, develop a strategic plan to meet your goals and focus on executing that plan as a team.
To be a successful leader, you must learn how to delegate and trust that the people you have surrounded yourself with will exceed your expectations. Dealing with conflict is a challenging issue, but a successful leader deals with conflict as it arises and understands that conflict is a part of the creative process of change, rather than something to be eliminated, avoided or squelched.
Above all, leaders must always maintain their integrity— even at the risk of losing their job. Without your integrity as a person and as a professional, you have nothing. You can always find another job, but, once compromised, your integrity is very hard to regain.
I have three main goals every day: Listen, communicate and “look over the next hill.” I spend 70 percent of my time listening to my constituents, whether they are physicians, hospital leaders, patients and their families, employees or our suppliers. The balance of my time is spent in communicating our vision of the future for patients, our physician partners and our staff. I take time every day to study and reflect on where the trends in our profession and the health care industry will take us, so I can prepare all my constituents for the rapid pace of change in health care.
Take time to nurture yourself physically, emotionally and spiritually. Whether it’s time with family and friends, exercise, or relaxation and reflection, renewing yourself regularly gives to you and brings you the resilience, energy and patience needed to be a great leader.