C-Suite Conversations

What healthcare leaders need to know now

Furst Group parent company acquiring Salveson Stetson Group

By | September 15 th,  2017 | Furst Group, Management Partners Inc., NuBrick Partners, Salveson Stetson Group, Blog, executive search | Add A Comment

Furst Group logo SSG logo


Salveson Stetson Group, a multi-specialty retained executive search firm that was recently named one of America’s top executive recruiting firms by Forbes, announced today that it has signed a letter of intent to be acquired by Management Partners Inc. (MPI), the parent company of Furst Group and a human capital consulting company based in Rockford, Ill. Following the transaction, which is expected to close by year-end, the firm will continue to operate as SSG under the leadership of co-founders Sally Stetson and John Salveson, who will also take on additional executive responsibilities for MPI.


Salveson Stetson Group will join the MPI family of companies, which includes Furst Group, ranked by Modern Healthcare as one of the nation’s top 10 healthcare search firms, and NuBrick Partners, MPI’s leadership consulting company. Together, the three firms will offer clients a wide range of executive search, assessment and leadership solutions.


Furst Group and Salveson Stetson Group are both members of IIC Partners, one of the top 10 retained executive search groups in the world with 54 offices in 36 countries.


“We are thrilled to be welcoming the Salveson Stetson Group team to the MPI family,” said Bob Clarke, CEO, and Sherrie Barch, President, of MPI. “The firm’s reputation and culture provide a perfect complement to ours. While there is obvious synergy for the work of both firms in healthcare and life sciences, this unlocks many new opportunities and industries for all of us. We envision a future that is much greater than the sum of our parts.”


“When we met MPI’s Bob Clarke and Sherrie Barch as new members of IIC Partners, we knew immediately that they were exceptional leaders and business people,” said Stetson. “We realized that joining forces would strengthen both of our firms, drive new business growth and expand our reach and capabilities.”


“By joining with MPI, Salveson Stetson Group becomes a much richer resource to our clients,” said Salveson. “We are excited to have the opportunity to offer our clients a broader set of talent and leadership development solutions through adding NuBrick Partners’ and Furst Group’s capabilities to our portfolio of services.”


IIC Partners’ Executive Director Christine Hayward cheered the move. “This demonstrates the true partnership and compatibility that our member firms enjoy,” she said. “I’m proud that IIC Partners is helping our members innovate and grow strategically in a rapidly changing marketplace.”



Furst Group adds industry veteran Megan Heim as vice president

By | August 15 th,  2017 | Furst Group, Megan Heim, Nashville, Blog, executive search | Add A Comment


Furst Group, a premier healthcare executive search firm, announces the expansion of its senior-executive team with the addition of Megan Heim, who is based in the burgeoning healthcare hub of Nashville, as vice president.


Heim joins the firm from with more than 20 years of experience in healthcare and consulting solutions.


“Megan Heim is well-known throughout healthcare as a thoughtful and innovative client-management executive and talent advisor,” says Furst Group President Sherrie Barch. “We are looking forward to watching her impact the industry with wisdom and integrity as we help our client partners develop their leadership teams.”


Heim brings extensive business and healthcare experience and has advised clients on hundreds of successful engagements including CEO, CFO, CNO, VP of Development, VPHR, Controller, clinical leadership roles, and many other senior-level positions.


Previously, Heim served as a division vice president for a top healthcare leadership services firm where she worked closely with many nationally recognized organizations to provide talent management and retained search services. For several years prior to that, Heim was a senior director at Optum Executive Health Resources where she partnered with hospital executives to ensure and improve compliance and financial performance. Heim also spent eight years with the industry’s largest healthcare research and advisory firm (The Advisory Board Company), where she held various roles from associate director to principal.


Furst Group is part of the companies of MPI. Its affiliate firm, NuBrick Partners, assists clients with leadership consulting, ranging from physician executive development to CEO and board services.



Laura Kaiser of SSM Health brings courage, conviction to questions around healthcare's future

By | June 8 th,  2017 | Affordable Care Act, chief executive officer, Furst Group, Harvard Business Review, Modern Healthcare, NuBrick Partners, president, SSM Health, Ascension, Blog, costs, Cuba, Intermountain Healthcare, New England Journal of Medicine, Top 25 Women in Healthcare | 4 Comments


One in a series of interviews with Modern Healthcare's Top 25 Women in Healthcare for 2017. Furst Group and NuBrick Partners, which comprise the companies of MPI, sponsor the awards.


U.S. healthcare has more questions than answers right now, but Laura Kaiser doesn’t shy away from them.


As the new president and CEO of SSM Health, Kaiser brings an impeccable resume back to her hometown of St. Louis, along with an inquisitive mind and a willingness to eschew the status quo.


“We need to think about how we make healthcare sustainable, affordable and accessible,” she says. “There’s always going to be a need for emergency care – acute, critical care, for injuries and illnesses that are unforeseen. But we need to invest in programs and services to minimize chronic conditions that are in fact preventable, because that will help us lower the overall cost of care.”


She’s outlined some of her thinking in major periodicals as co-author of articles in the Harvard Business Review and the New England Journal of Medicine. In HBR, she opined on “Turning Value-Based Care Into A Real Business Model.” And, in the medical journal, she and co-author Thomas Lee, MD, were blunt in encouraging big pharma to become full partners in the quest for value-based care: “As payers and providers work together to improve value, will pharmaceutical companies join that effort, or will they acts as vendors that merely maximize short-term profits for shareholders?”


“I think any approach to affordable care must have all stakeholders involved and engaged,” she says today. “I actually heard from one of the pharma companies after that was published, and they are interested in having further dialogue.”


Kaiser has no problem saying that healthcare is a right, not a privilege, for all humans, a stance her faith-based system supports completely.


“I’ve said this to many people without any intended partisan viewpoint,” Kaiser says. “No matter where you sit politically, healthcare isn’t political. For all of its flaws, the Affordable Care Act did three very important things. First, it heightened awareness about the need to provide excellent healthcare to all Americans. Second, it alleviated some financial hardship for people with pre-existing conditions. Last, it extended the availability of healthcare for people up to the age of 26 on their parents’ insurance coverage.”


A year and a half ago, Kaiser saw a different approach to healthcare during a fact-finding mission to Cuba, and she has been ruminating on it ever since.


“I wanted to see how it is that this small country – and one that has relatively limited resources compared to the U.S. – has better health outcomes than we do,” says Kaiser. “How are they doing that?”


Kaiser discovered that physicians, nurses and statisticians are embedded in each community at a rate of about one for every 1,000 to 1,500 residents.


“I visited a few of those clinicians,” Kaiser says. “Their medical records are spiral-bound notebooks with pencils. They provide primary care to patients and, if they need a higher level of care, patients are sent to a specialty practice, similar to a federally qualified health center in the U.S. If they end up needing hospitalization, they are simply referred to one of the hospitals across the country. It is a single system.”


And medicine is free, including insulin for people with diabetes.


“A lot of people in the U.S. have to make the terrible choice between buying medicines or food,” she says. “If we changed our approach, we could create incentives for people to stay healthy, and the overall cost of healthcare in this country would decrease. So, that’s my dream.”


At the time of the trip, Kaiser was chief operating officer of Intermountain Healthcare, a Utah-based health system known far and wide for its quality. Earlier in her career, she spent 15 years with St. Louis-based Ascension, another health system with a stellar reputation. Now, in taking the helm as only the third CEO in SSM Health’s history, she has a similarly pristine heritage to draw from – SSM Health was the first health system to be awarded the prestigious Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award in 2002.


“The organization is deeply rooted in continuous quality improvement,” she says. “They have been on the cutting edge since the time of the Baldrige award, so there really is a great foundation on which to build the health system of the future.”


The answers that Kaiser and her team come up with should offer some interesting architecture for the future of SSM Health – and American healthcare.



SIDEBAR: The end of life brings questions, and courage, too


Much of the country’s healthcare spending occurs during the final weeks and months of patients’ lives. SSM Health President and CEO Laura Kaiser says that needs to be discussed openly and extensively.


“Discussing death and dying is becoming more acceptable thanks to people like Dr. Atul Gawande, who wrote the wonderful book Being Mortal, and Sheryl Sandberg, the author of Option B, a powerfully written book about recovering after suffering the loss of her husband,” says Kaiser, whose parents eventually chose hospice care after battling cancer. “Death and dying can be difficult to discuss, but it is something we need to grapple with as a country and as a society.”


She saw great courage in her parents as they made difficult decisions at the end of their lives.


“What my dad chose and experienced in hospice was beautiful care. It is what everyone should have if that’s where you find yourself,” Kaiser says. “Many years later, my mom made the same choice and had a similarly extraordinary experience.”


Her parents’ bravery flows through Kaiser and gives her confidence while she confronts complex issues as one of the nation’s leading healthcare executives. Kaiser’s dad, a chemical engineer, was her first mentor about leadership. She has fond memories of him from her childhood, listening to classical music in the car while driving to the library together. They shared a love for the “Peanuts” cartoons – especially Lucy, seated in her counseling booth, offering a listening ear for five cents.


“I trusted my dad’s counsel and would knock on his home-office door, saying, ‘I have my nickel.’ He would say, ‘Come on in for the consult,’ ” says Kaiser with a chuckle. “I had many 'consults' with him and am the better for it today.”



Wharton Healthcare Quarterly features article on developing physician leaders by Clarke, Mazzenga

By | May 5 th,  2017 | Furst Group, Bob Clarke, NuBrick Partners, organizational leaders, value-based, Blog, Joe Mazzenga, Leadership Development, University of Pennsylvania, Wharton Healthcare Management, physician leadership, Wharton Healthcare Quarterly | Add A Comment


The latest issue of the Wharton Healthcare Quarterly is out, and it features a pertinent article from Furst Group's Bob Clarke and Joe Mazzenga on the challenge and reward of developing physician leaders to lead the entire enterprise, not just a clinical department.


Published by the Wharton Healthcare Management Alumni Association at the University of Pennsylvania, the latest issue of the Quarterly also features articles on the transition to value-based payment, the coming challenges posed by post-acute care, and creating a culture of value.


Clarke is the chief executive officer of Furst Group and NuBrick Partners. Mazzenga is managing partner of NuBrick Partners, our leadership consulting firm, and a Furst Group vice president.


The authors acknowledge that both administrators and physicians have work to do to achieve success in this endeavor and that, ultimately, "True leadership is about building teams who create an empathetic and collaborative culture."


To read the complete article, click here.



'What Does Leadership Look Like?' Read our new magazine

By | April 6 th,  2017 | chief executive officer, Furst Group, MPI, C-suite, governance, NuBrick Partners, Blog, leadership, magazine, What Does Leadership Look Like | Add A Comment


In today's healthcare climate, leadership is not easy. We're grateful for the insights and innovations of many of the industry's top leaders.


As part of our sponsorship of Modern Healthcare's Top 25 awards programs honoring diverse executives, we explore what leadership means through in-depth interviews with many of these top leaders.


We've compiled these profiles, along with pertinent articles on governance, in the new magazine "What Does Leadership Look Like?"


Stories from the 52-page leadership magazine include:


  • Philip Ozuah's journey from medical school at age 14 in Africa to caring for underserved populations in the Bronx
  • Pat Maryland's axioms of risk-taking as a leader
  • Bruce Siegel's observation that a diverse board will lead to a diverse organization
  • Debra Canales' insistence on people-centered leadership

    Click here to read the magazine.



    Diverse governance is a key to population health

    By | March 18 th,  2016 | American Hospital Association, Furst Group, population health, governance, Blog, board of directors, diversity, Trustee magazine, Deanna Banks | Add A Comment


    Classic content from Trustee magazine and Furst Group:


    "From allocating capital funds to improving community health status, the diverse makeup of the service area has to be factored into decisions, and trustees steeped in the unique factors of that diversity are essential..."


    That's the beginning premise of a recent article in Trustee magazine from the American Hospital Association on why diversity in the board room is pivotal for organizations seeking to understand and equip their leadership teams to achieve success in population health.


    Without diversity, notes Furst Group principal Deanna Banks in the article, "What you get is a group-think. You've got similar-minded people from a singular exposure making decisions on behalf of things for which they lack insight and understanding -- and sometimes empathy."


    Kelvin Westbrook, chair of BJC Healthcare in St. Louis, shares a memorable experience he had years ago about the "shoe test."


    "If you look under the table and you don't have a diversity of shoes, you're probably going to get a much narrower perspective on what can and cannot work."


    To read the complete article, click here.



    June 8: Save the date for the Top 25 Minority Executives awards gala

    By | March 4 th,  2016 | Furst Group, Top 25 Minority Executives in Healthcare, 2016, healthcare executives, Modern Healthcare, Blog | Add A Comment


    Registration is open for the Modern Healthcare Top 25 Minority Executives gala, sponsored by Furst Group.


    The dinner and celebration is scheduled for Wednesday, June 8 at the Sofitel Chicago Water Tower. The reception begins at 6 p.m., with dinner and the awards ceremony following at 7 p.m.


    The awards honor 25 of the most powerful executives in the healthcare industry, in addition to 10 additional diverse leaders selected as People to Watch.


    Modern Healthcare characterizes the honorees as "leaders who have successfully managed their organization; shown the ability or power to effect change in the healthcare industry; demonstrated a willingness to share expertise with others in the field; served as a role model or mentor to other minority healthcare executives; and assumed a leadership position in the industry outside of the candidate's own organization or company."


    Early-bird tickets ($270 each) are available through April 21. For more information or to register, click here.



    Announcing the Top 25 Minority Executives in Healthcare

    By | February 15 th,  2016 | Furst Group, Top 25 Minority Executives in Healthcare, 2016, Modern Healthcare, Blog | Add A Comment


    Save the date: June 8.


    That's when Modern Healthcare will honor the Top 25 Minority Executives in Healthcare for 2016 at a gala in Chicago.


    The awards, sponsored by Furst Group, honor 25 of the most powerful executives in the healthcare industry, in addition to 10 additional diverse leaders selected as People to Watch.


    The Top 25 Minority Executives in Healthcare were announced in today's issue of Modern Healthcare. They are:


  • Kelvin Baggett, SVP and chief clinical officer, Tenet
  • Georges Benjamin, executive director, American Public Health Association
  • Ruth Brinkley, president and CEO, KentuckyOne Health
  • Ben Carson, presidential candidate, author, speaker
  • Lloyd Dean, president and CEO, Dignity Health
  • Kenneth Frazier, CEO, Merck
  • Trent Haywood, SVP and CMO, Blue Cross Blue Shield Association
  • John Kapoor, chairman, president and CEO, Insys Therapeutics
  • Joe Kiani, chairman and CEO, Masimo Corp.
  • Wright Lassiter III, president, Henry Ford Health system
  • Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, president and CEO, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
  • Kevin Lofton, CEO, Catholic Health Initiatives
  • Patricia Maryland, president of healthcare operations and COO, Ascension Health
  • Tauana McDonald, SVP of clinical business operations, Trinity Health
  • Carlos Migoya, president and CEO, Jackson Health System
  • Vivek Murthy, U.S. surgeon general
  • Philip Ozuah, EVP and chief operating officer, Montefiore Medical Center
  • Ram Raju, president and CEO, NYC Health & Hospitals
  • Prem Reddy, chairman and CEO, Prime Healthcare Services
  • Bruce Siegel, president and CEO, America’s Essential Hospitals
  • Patrick Soon-Shiong, founder, NantHealth
  • Bernard Tyson, chairman and CEO, Kaiser Permanente
  • A. Eugene Washington, president and CEO, Duke University Health System; chancellor for health affairs, Duke University
  • Eugene Woods, incoming president and CEO, Carolinas Healthcare System
  • Jonathan Woodson, assistant secretary of defense for health affairs, U.S. Defense Department

    In addition, here are the 10 leaders chosen as People to Watch:


  • Debra Canales, EVP and chief people and experience officer, Providence Health and Services
  • Leon Clark, chairman, research administration department, Mayo Clinic
  • Claudia Fegan, executive medical officer, Cook County Health and Hospital System
  • Delvecchio Finley, CEO, Alameda Health System
  • Sachin Jain, COO and chief medical officer, CareMore Health System
  • Sumit Nagpal, co-founder and CEO, LumiraDx USA
  • Ketul Patel, CEO, CHI Franciscan Health, and SVP of division operations for the Pacific Northwest Region, Catholic Health Initiatives
  • Pamela Sutton-Wallace, CEO, University of Virginia Medical Center
  • Nicholas Tejeda, CEO, The Hospitals of Providence, East Campus
  • Ije-Enu Udeze, chief of staff, office of the CEO, Kaiser Permanente

    For more information, click here.



    Tim Frischmon: Leading by influence in a matrixed organization is key for leaders in the payer space

    By | January 15 th,  2016 | Furst Group, executive, Tim Frischmon, Aine Cryts, Blog, Changing Face of Healthcare Leadership, leadership, Managed Healthcare Executive, matrix, provider, payer | Add A Comment


    Furst Group principal Tim Frischmon is interviewed in the new issue of Managed Healthcare Executive, commenting on how the rapidly changing healthcare industry has created a huge need for executives to adapt and evolve as well.


    In the article by Aine Cryts, "The Changing Face of Healthcare Leadership," Frischmon notes that leaders will need to use their influence to lead in organizations that increasingly have a matrix structure. And those that succeed will be the ones who are able to help their staffs tune out all the speculation about consolidation that has been occurring in the payer space.


    "The challenge," he says, "will be to keep employees focused on executing on [their work], despite all the noise going on about the expectations the outside world has about the mergers."


    Leaders also will need to pay attention to the convergence that is building between payers and providers, Frischmon notes. And one thing that won't change as a measure of a CEO's success is revenue.


    "Payers still have to be profitable. Leaders will still have to demonstrate how they build deep, solid relationships with providers," Frischmon says. "They'll also need to demonstrate how they're able to identify and build some stickiness with their brand among members, and they'll have to measure their success."


    Read the full story by clicking here.



    Page 1/4