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Announcing the Top 25 Women Leaders in Healthcare - 2019

By | February 18 th,  2019 | Modern Healthcare, Blog, diversity, Top 25 Women in Healthcare | Add A Comment

 

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Furst Group and NuBrick Partners are proud to sponsor the Top 25 Women in Healthcare, the awards program created by Modern Healthcare. This is our 11th year of sponsoring the program, which culminates in an awards gala on August 1 in Chicago.

 

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Please click here to read our interviews with previous honorees from the Top 25 awards programs.

 

2019 Top 25 Women Leaders in Healthcare 

  • NANCY HOWELL AGEE, President/CEO, Carilion Clinic
  • MADELINE BELL, President/CEO, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
  • MARY BOOSALIS, President/CEO, Premier Health
  • DEBRA CANALES, Executive vice president/chief administrative officer, Providence St. Joseph Health
  • DR. MANDY COHEN, Secretary, North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services
  • TINA FREESE DECKER, President/CEO, Spectrum Health
  • CYNTHIA HUNDORFEAN, President/CEO, Allegheny Health Network
  • LAURA KAISER, President/CEO, SSM Health
  • DR. ANNE KLIBANSKI, Chief academic officer, Partners HealthCare
  • KATHY LANCASTER, Executive vice president/chief financial officer, Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals
  • KAREN LYNCH, Executive vice president, CVS Health
  • PATRICIA MARYLAND, President/CEO, Ascension Healthcare
  • DR. BARBARA MCANENY, President, American Medical Association
  • DR. REDONDA MILLER, President, Johns Hopkins Hospital
  • DR. JANICE NEVIN, President/CEO, Christiana Care Health System
  • AMY PERRY, CEO, hospital division Atlantic Health System
  • CANDICE SAUNDERS, President/CEO, WellStar Health System
  • NINFA SAUNDERS, President/CEO, Navicent Health
  • DR. JOANNE SMITH, President/CEO, Shirley Ryan AbilityLab
  • JOHNESE SPISSO, President, UCLA Health
  • PAULA STEINER, President/CEO, Health Care Service Corp.
  • PAMELA SUTTON-WALLACE, CEO, University of Virginia Medical Center
  • SUSAN SWEENEY, President/head, U.S. Commercial Bristol-Myers Squibb
  • SEEMA VERMA, Administrator CMS
  • ANDREA WALSH, President/CEO, HealthPartners

 

LUMINARIES

  • MARNA BORGSTROM, CEO, Yale New Haven Health
  • DR. JOANNE CONROY, President/CEO, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health
  • SUSAN DEVORE, President/CEO, Premier
  • JUDY FAULKNER, President/CEO, Epic Systems Corp.
  • SISTER CAROL KEEHAN, President/CEO, Catholic Health Association 

 

WOMEN TO WATCH

In addition, here are the 10 executives chosen as Women Leaders to Watch:

  • AMBER CAMBRON, President/CEO, BlueCare Tennessee
  • DR. LAURA FORESE, Executive vice president/chief operating officer, New York-Presbyterian
  • DR. REBEKAH GEE, Secretary, Louisiana Department of Health
  • DR. PATRICE HARRIS, President-elect, American Medical Association
  • SALLY HURT-DEITCH, Chief nursing officer, Tenet Healthcare Corp.
  • LYNN KRUTAK, Chief financial officer, Ballad Health
  • REBECCA MADSEN, Chief consumer officer, UnitedHealthcare
  • DR. RHONDA MEDOWS, Executive vice president of population health, Providence St. Joseph Health
  • MIKELLE MOORE, Senior vice president of community health, Intermountain Healthcare
  • HEATHER WALL, Chief commercial officer, Civica Rx

 

For more information, click here.

M & A in practice: A ground-level view

By | February 14 th,  2019 | leadership traits, Ground-level view, Harnessing your board, clinical training, decision-making | Add A Comment

First-time CEO Ronnie Ursin shares lessons learned through his experience with Tower Health


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The healthcare news cycle fills up fast these days with news of mergers and acquisitions. But what really happens at ground level as organizations are acquired or come together? Ronnie Ursin, chosen as one the 10 Leaders to Watch by Modern Healthcare as part of its Top 25 Minority Executives in Healthcare program, has gotten a close-up look at one of those situations since being named the CEO at Jennersville Hospital in West Grove, Pennsylvania.

 

Reading Health System purchased five local hospitals from a major healthcare chain. Reading renamed itself Tower Health and hired Ursin, a former Reading executive who was working as a chief nursing officer at a hospital in his home state of Louisiana, to lead the 63-bed Jennersville facility.

 

“Speaking from the standpoint of Tower Health, one of the things we are working on very diligently and carefully is the organizational culture,” Ursin says. “About 95 percent of the staff at Jennersville Hospital worked in the previous culture.”

 

Ursin has held several “town hall” meetings with all Jennersville staff members since taking over.

“We are trying to take their feedback and put it into action,” he says. “We still have some people on the fence, but we are doing our best to communicate that we are going to do our best for our patients and staff, and we are going to do right by our doctors. That’s going to drive our success.”

Cultural implications can sometimes be overlooked in M & A as most of the attention is laser-focused on financials, yet evidence is clear that few things can derail a transaction more quickly. Taking time to work diligently and thoughtfully with all affected team members is essential, for human capital remains a company’s greatest asset.

 

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Actions speak volumes for leaders

 

Jennersville’s previous owner was hampered by large financial losses at its facilities across the country. Ursin and his team have come in and targeted tangible improvements to infrastructure and equipment, demonstrating a willingness to invest in its staff and demonstrating good faith at the same time.

 

“We have a full plan to invest in surgical scopes and other instruments. We’re investing in getting more patient care equipment such as EKG machines, and facility upgrades. And we’re looking at potentially bringing in a Da Vinci robot device to support our service lines,” he says.

 

Tower Health, says Ursin, also is installing the Epic health IT system to achieve the aim of patients having just one chart across the entire health system.

 

Carrying through on promises builds credibility for new leaders, and employee engagement rises. That, in turn, usually translates to increased productivity, something that Ursin and Tower are conscious of.

 

Harnessing your board

 

In building a new culture, Ursin and his leadership team have help. At the board level, Ursin’s directors are carrying the message as well. Since they have been interwoven into the community for some time, their involvement carries no small weight.

 

“Because Tower Health is new to the community, a major part of our board members’ role is to convey the message we have about advancing health and transforming the lives of the people in our community. They are taking our initial quality initiatives and are able to articulate that to members of the community.”

 

Board members have greater responsibility and experience higher stakes in today’s healthcare climate. The best CEOs provide ...

 

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Key Traits and Characteristics of the Best CHROs

By | February 6 th,  2019 | C-suite, Global Leaders, globalization of business, CHRO, HR, IIC Partners | Add A Comment

Image courtesy of IIC PartnersMembers of IIC Partners recently had the opportunity to engage in candid conversations with a variety of global leaders about the Chief Human Resource Officer (CHRO) role and what it takes to be successful. They offered insights into the world of CHROs, how critical the role is in an organization, and how instrumental it is in shaping the current and future growth of leading companies.

 

Below are a few of the key points that are covered in the article:

 

Background and Experience of a Successful CHRO
  • As a fundamental for human resource management, most professionals interviewed indicated that “people skills” were critical to their success.
  • Solid business experience and understanding of your individu­al business model is at least as important as intuitive human interaction skills for success.
  • For some of the CHROs interviewed, success could be attributed to individual challenges.
The Most Pressing Challenges for the Twenty First Century CHRO
  • “The ability to bring the right quality of talent in a highly competitive market,” says Arun Paul. With historically low unemployment rates throughout the world it is hard to find the right kind of talent for roles.
  • Some HR professionals mentioned distinct challenges related to the economic or political environment in which they operated and not just in developing countries.
  • Maintaining employee engagement is a huge challenge. According to Nicola Hale, “finding ways to continuously inspire and motivate others … whilst at the same time keeping this balanced and looking out for people… it’s very easy for leaders to lose a sense of perspective.” 
The Characteristics of the ideal CHRO in Future Business Models
  • When asked what characteristics or traits would be critical for a CHRO to meet an organization’s future needs, responses varied widely, no doubt reflecting the specific needs of the organization in question as well as the background of the individual CHRO.
  • One common theme was that leaders are going to have to really adapt to the changing environments and the HR person needs to be able to help other leaders in that transformation.
  • Most importantly, HR needs to focus on people and not so much on processes and measurement as they were before.

Download the full article here to see more insights on the CHRO role and its crucial impact on an organization.

 

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IIC Partners Global Human Resources Practice Group

The IIC Partners Global Human Resources Practice Group is comprised of a seasoned team of executive search consultants with unparalleled industry knowledge and expertise in identifying the best senior executive Human Resources talent. Human Resources executives must possess the technical qualifications, right leadership style and serve as a trusted advisor to the senior leadership team. The IIC Partners Global Human Resources Practice Group has unrivaled access to passive talent markets in over 34 countries and regularly collaborate to deliver the right candidate to the client.

 

Visit www.IICPartners.com for more information.

From scratch: A tale of diversity in action

By | January 25 th,  2019 | Changing Face of Healthcare Leadership, Diversity in action, Young executives, Working Effectively | Add A Comment

Mario Garner drives success through mirroring the community


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What would you do if you had the opportunity to start a hospital from scratch? How would you staff your leadership team? What type of culture would you strive to create?

 

Mario Garner, now the chief operating officer for two Memorial Hermann hospitals in Houston,
MH Southeast, Pearland and a free-standing emergency room, has had the chance to start with a blank 
slate twice, and he’s not even 40 yet.

 

In 2013, he became the CEO of New Orleans East Hospital, which was built after Hurricane Katrina decimated the neighborhood in which it is placed. And in 2015, he moved to Texas to serve as CEO of the new Memorial Hermann Pearland Hospital.

 

“It was a tremendous opportunity to build a team to meet the needs of the respective communities,” Garner says today. “It was a clean slate, so I did not inherit a way of doing things. I was able to spark a level of interest by being creative with the teams I was able to build at these respective campuses.”

 

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Diversity is a must-have ingredient

 

In both cases, Garner made it a point to make sure his leadership teams reflected the communities they served. New Orleans East is an urban hospital in the inner city; Pearland is in a diverse suburban setting in the Houston metro area.

 

Diversity has been shown to be essential for successful organizations. Study after study shows that companies with diverse leadership are more successful financially, are more innovative, function better and make more deliberate decisions than those lacking diversity.

 

“The leadership teams at both of these de novo hospitals were able to bring innovative ideas and best practices from various other locations,” he adds. “At New Orleans East Hospital, we were able to recruit physicians fairly easily. By the time we opened the doors, we had more than 100 credentialed physicians for the campus – which spoke to the physicians’ interest. Some were eager to return to the community, while others wanted to come in and serve in what was in many regards an underserved area. We also didn’t have the challenges of overcoming an aged physical plant, so it was very easy to recruit.”

 

Pearland was a bit different situation, but just as exciting, he says. “Memorial Hermann has a methodology for operating our hospitals, so we were able to take many of those components and lay them as a foundation. Then, we were able to build on that with the unique aspect of opening a new hospital and establishing a positive culture, one that would create employee engagement, as well as engagement with our physicians and patients.”

 

Working effectively with the board

 

The unique governance structures of both hospitals also gave Garner broad experience in very different situations.

 

“At Memorial Hermann, I had the opportunity to work closely with corporate infrastructure,” he says. “I reported to a regional president who was able to provide significant guidance as

to the Memorial Hermann way of hospital operations. She helped me overcome any barriers or roadblocks when it came to acquiring what I needed to execute contracts and other activation components to get the hospital open on time and under budget.”

 

New Orleans East was completely different. The hospital was built with ...

 

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A template for change: Continual transformation is a must for leaders

By | January 8 th,  2019 | change management, Changing Face of Healthcare Leadership, change agents, transformational leadership | Add A Comment

Atrium Health’s Gene Woods provides guidance for enacting a ‘relentless pursuit of excellence’GeneWoods-Headshot

 

At a recent Modern Healthcare gathering on transformation, Atrium Health CEO Gene Woods gave an impassioned presentation on how health systems need to evolve and reinvent themselves. Yet he also says continual transformation is something he and his leadership team must take to heart themselves.

 

“In my 27-year career, the field is changing faster than any of us anticipated,” he says in an interview. “Just look at Medical knowledge and how it is now doubling every several months. This is just one small example of why it’s so important for healthcare leaders to be learning, and that’s what my team and I have been doing. It’s probably been more intentional than anything I’ve ever done.”

 

A quote from leadership expert and former GE chairman Jack Welch is something Woods can quote from memory on this topic: “If the rate of change on the outside exceeds the rate of change on the inside, then irrelevance is near.”

 

Thus, among other actions, Woods and his team have created an ongoing series of what he calls “Home and Aways,” where successful and innovative healthcare organizations visit Atrium to share best practices, and Atrium leaders travel to other healthcare companies to do the same.

 

The exchanges benefit the organizations, but also serve as leadership development exercises for the teams involved. Managing change is high on a CEO’s list these days, and organizational leaders must be painstaking in making sure their teams are aligned. That, in part, has led to a rise in the use of executive team performance training.

 

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How other industries adapt to change

 

But Woods’ interest in transformation doesn’t stop at the boundaries of the healthcare industry. “Sometimes, we can be insular as a field,” he says, “and not recognize what other fields are doing as they’re adapting to change.”

 

So, Woods leans on his board chair, Ed Brown, to help him and his senior leaders learn from other industries as well.  Brown put together the financing for the new stadium that is home to NFL’s Carolina Panthers. Brown currently serves as CEO of Hendrick Motors, the most recognized brand in auto racing, and Woods notes that the entire auto industry is going through transformation as well.

 

“The key thing,” Woods says, “is being more intentional, not just around what’s happening with other health systems throughout the country but looking at what’s happening in other industries and how they have adapted over time.”

 

Forward thinking is part of what has made Woods, the former chair of the American Hospital Association, one of the most influential CEOs in the country. Even when he took the reins of Atrium two years ago (then known as Carolinas HealthCare System), he left no stone unturned in examining and reinventing a historically successful organization.

 

“I think the changes we’re making are about how to continue to position ourselves to be successful for the next decade and beyond,” he says. “Standing still is not an option. Standing still is going backwards. And so, we continue this relentless pursuit of excellence. That requires that we continue to make changes. The resiliency in the face of change is something I’ve really been proud of in our team.”

 

Examining one’s own leadership

 

Woods says he expects just as much openness to change in himself as he does in the Atrium team.

 

“My philosophy is this: No matter how accomplished of a leader you are, no more than 60 percent of your experience will be relevant to your new organization; there’s probably 40 percent that you have to learn and digest. That keeps you a bit humble and keeps you in a listening mode,” he says.

 

A leader who goes into a new position simply planning to share their vaunted experience “may miss some of the cultural cues,” Woods adds.

 

For reasons such as these, an increasing number of ... 

 

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Leadership in action: How one organization is creating a strong development program

By | December 11 th,  2018 | Leadership Development, developing leaders, leadership traits, talent pipeline | Add A Comment

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Deanna Banks, Principal - Furst Group, was recently asked to join the advisory board for MD Anderson’s Leadership Institute. This phenomenal group of professionals and experts from all areas of healthcare and leadership is charged with supporting MD Anderson’s initiative to create a development program for existing and upcoming leaders within their organization.

 

By examining a wide-range of challenges and opportunities leaders will face, including transformation change, multi-generational teams, emotional intelligence, and more, MD Anderson hopes to dig deep into what works and what doesn’t from a curriculum and real-world application standpoint. The advisory board aims to share trends, best practices, theory and other insights that will help guide the organization in their efforts.

 

Banks’ strong background in diversity, governance and talent management allows her to bring a unique, practical application perspective on these topics. Having worked with hundreds of organizations and thousands of leaders in her 20+ years of executive recruitment, Banks brings a core body of knowledge that balances well with the backgrounds and experience of others on the advisory board.

 

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“I look forward to engaging with the board and the amazing team at MD Anderson,” said Banks. “This is an exceptional opportunity to build a program with a strong foundation in academics and theory, as well as real-life application and best practices that most organizations struggle to create, but MD Anderson has tapped some of the best minds in the space to assist in their efforts. The collective intelligence of this team will no doubt result in the development of an outstanding program.”

 

 

Diversity matters – Top 25 Women in Healthcare nominations now open

By | October 25 th,  2018 | women in leadership, Modern Healthcare, Top 25 Women in Healthcare, nominations | Add A Comment

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Diversity matters. You matter. And your opinion counts.

 

As you may know, we are longtime sponsors of the Top 25 Women in Healthcare awards for Modern Healthcare. We’re going into our 11th year, actually. The awards celebrate the best leaders in healthcare, and we think they feel especially important and pertinent this year.

 

Nominations are now open for the 2019 Top 25 Women in Healthcare awards, which will be presented at a gala in Chicago next summer in conjunction with the Women Leaders in Healthcare conference, another event we sponsor for Modern Healthcare.

 

We’d encourage you and your team to think about a woman leader who merits consideration for this award. Maybe that’s a supervisor, or a colleague, or a friend. If so, nominate them to be one of the Top 25 Women in Healthcare. Or, maybe that’s you. Consider asking your supervisor to nominate you. The deadline for nominations is Nov. 22. We have no say in choosing the honorees – the editors at Modern Healthcare choose the winners with no input from us.  But we’d like that decision to be a difficult one, and it could be if you’re included.

 

Click here for the link to nominations.

 

The doors are open, and we welcome your participation!

 

Pamela Sutton-Wallace identifies 3 key traits for CEOs

By | October 18 th,  2018 | Pamela Sutton-Wallace, women in leadership, leadership traits, Lean leadership, Key traits for CEOs, Six Sigma in Healthcare | Add A Comment
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Real-world advice: ‘Operational knowledge is essential to casting vision,’ says Pamela Sutton-Wallace

 

 

In her four years as the CEO of the University of Virginia Medical Center, Pamela Sutton-Wallace has led the push to transform care delivery with an unwavering focus on quality, patient safety and service.  

 

Together with Executive Vice President Richard P. Shannon, she introduced Lean principles and implemented new processes and structures to equip the entire team with the skills needed for this transformation.

 

The medical center conducts a daily 10 a.m. huddle with leaders and managers from across the organization to immediately tackle any issues related to mortalities, infections, patient falls or staff-member injuries that may have occurred in the previous 24 hours.

 

In addition, she hired additional team members to afford frontline staff more time to focus on and participate in continuous improvement activities, ensuring that the organization was meeting its aggressive performance goals. But she kept it as simple as possible.

 

“Our organization collects and reports almost 500 quality measures, and we’re a relatively small organization,” she says. “There’s no way an organization can effectively improve all of those measures simultaneously, so I told my team, ‘Let’s focus on those measures with the greatest opportunity for improvement and where we can be most effective.’ ”

 

Sutton-Wallace sees three qualities as essential for the CEO role. 

 

#1 Dedicated Focus

In addition to her experience in the insurance and pharmaceutical industries, Sutton-Wallace credits her background as an operations leader (for Duke University Hospital) as solid preparation for her role as CEO.

 

In succession planning, of course, a chief operating officer is is often viewed as the heir apparent when the CEO leaves. In fact, an ErnstYoung study revealed that 54 percent of COOs in rapid-growth markets desired to ascend to the CEO role. EY noted that its research showed many other C-suite leaders “are typically happier to remain where they are.”

 

“I do think having operational knowledge is essential to casting vision,” Sutton-Wallace says,
“because it’s essential to understand what is required to translate your vision into operational reality. Ideally, you would have seen in an operations role what it takes to accomplish it. Achieving one’s vision requires a deep understanding of organizational culture and how to motivate and inspire those who do the work every day. My operations background has been absolutely crucial in my ability to lead.”

 

She’s been around healthcare long enough to have seen  ...

 

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The organizational advantages of authentic leadership

By | October 16 th,  2018 | developing leaders, Tiara Muse, Megan Heim authentic, Chicago Healthcare Executives Forum, leadership traits, authentic leadership | Add A Comment

How can you be strategic about your career and goals while being true to yourself and treating the people around you with empathy and encouragement?

 

That’s the focus of our latest article, “Authentic Leadership: 4 Ways to Make Your Passion Purposeful,” which is featured in the new publication from the Chicago Healthcare Executives Forum, part of the American College of Healthcare Executives. 

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Written by Furst Group’s Director of Research Tiara Muse and Vice President Megan Heim, the article makes a strong case that leadership is based on earned trust – and that the surest path to trust is by allowing yourself to be transparent with your team and letting qualities like empathy and humility shine through. Look out for your team and embrace opportunities for them to grow into their own leadership skills as well.

 

“Build a strong reputation as a leader with the competence and compassion to develop other leaders,” Muse and Heim write. “Ensure your open-door policy is not just lip service, and genuinely ask for feedback.”

 

Leaders should also be self-aware, cognizant of their strengths and areas that need development. Mentors can be helpful in this area, as well as discussions with executive recruiters, who are well-networked in the healthcare industry. But don’t overlook the counsel of peers as well.

 

“The best leaders network strategically,” Muse and Heim say. “Many people look up the organizational leader too often and not across the aisle or down the hall as they think through career development. The executives at the top don’t have all the answers; utilize your peers.” 

 

When it comes to career development, they add, remain flexible and “maintain the posture of a continuous learner” to prepare yourself for unexpected twists and turns.

 

“Many aspects of your career may change in the next 5 to 10 years – the pace of innovation and disruption accelerates every year,” they add.

 

Finally, Muse and Heim counsel executives to be aware that their behavior – including the use of social-media platforms – can build their personal brand and reputation, so treat your career and the people around you with care. “The power of storytelling,” they note, “is a vital skill” for all leaders, not just marketing executives.

 

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Priming the pipeline for success: Janet Liang outlines the key to creating a strong bench of talent for organizational stability

By | October 12 th,  2018 | Kaiser Permanente, Janet Liang, developing leaders, talent pipeline | Add A Comment
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A lot of organizations talk about the importance of talent pipelines in their leadership ranks, but Janet Liang backs up her words with plenty of action.

 

Liang, President of the Northern California region of Kaiser Permanente-- a region with 4.2 million members, 72,000 employees and 21 hospitals-- has developed several successful leadership initiatives, including a Nurse Scholars Academy, an Emerging Leaders program, a Chief Operating Officers bootcamp and a Finance Leaders Academy.

 

“I want the organization to have bench strength so we’re never vulnerable in terms of our ability to deliver our plans and build our momentum,” she says. “I believe that stability and continuity in leadership is critical for the organization. We have big aspirations – not just for our patients, but for their families and communities.”

 

The nature of Kaiser Permanente’s business, which is both provider and payer, makes it difficult at times to find talent that will fit ... 

 

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