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Rising costs in healthcare seem to be the focus of discussion as of late due to the developments of new treatments, medicines, tests, and devices. However, leadership in medicine has risen in the ranks of importance over the years, especially in 2018 in the wake of calls for equality in the workplace. There are a few specific things leaders in the medical industry should be focusing on including culture, performance, teamwork and mission.


It is important to produce and shape a company culture where people feel accepted, supported, and heard. This starts with educating staff on controversial topics and how to handle them, along with the importance of policy enforcement across the board. Demonstrate accountability in all forms in order to create a company culture that works for everyone.


In order to be a successful leader in medicine, your job performance should be exemplary. You cannot be successful in leadership if you do not practice what you preach. A great mindset is to never ask something of someone that you would not be willing to do yourself. Be a team player, ready to get your hands dirty in order to produce a successful outcome. While this can be difficult to measure in such an intimate industry, developing a system to determine performance success across the board will help clarify to your employees the exact expectations they face. In my experience, the use of dashboards with performance metrics clearly laid out can make a huge difference.  The data used in these dashboards must be meaningful, timely and, above all, actionable for the folks doing the daily work.


Promoting high-performance levels across your employees can be difficult, but is entirely possible with the help of some teamwork. A single physician or nurse can feel limited at times when it comes to controlling their patient’s fate. However, if can create an environment that allows that physicians and nurses to work in high functioning teams that offer true support to achieve common goals of great patient outcomes, the organization will thrive.


When it comes to leadership in medicine, it’s also important to be smart when declaring our motives for success.  Leaders are often accused of only being interested in the financial bottom line. The common thing that binds us all together is the patient.  The patient is the touchstone, the center of every worthwhile mission in healthcare. Remembering to ask “what is the best for the patient?” about each new initiative or complex decision serves all stakeholders best.