FOCUS: Essential Capacity for Health Care Today and Beyond

Today’s health care leaders and their organizations face many challenges – changing regulations, new payment models and total health care redesign.

For ongoing success, leaders need to cultivate a triad of awareness: an inward focus, a focus on others and an outward focus. (Harvard Business Review)

• Focusing inward and focusing on others helps leaders cultivate emotional intelligence.
• Focusing outward can improve their ability to devise a strategy, innovate and manage organizations.

What is your focus? As leaders, if we are just adapting our operational strategies, we are merely keeping pace with change and will continue to react to the “curve balls” thrown our way.  A more strategic approach toward leadership focus is to strive to understand and anticipate health care trends and expectations, proactively defining innovative strategies to meet the clinical, regulatory, partner and consumer demands to maintain our market position and achieve quality results.


Here are a few tactics that I recommend to increase your leadership focus: 

  • Increase Knowledge – Gain a clear understanding of the changes and their defined impact on your organization and outcomes.  Don’t be sidelined by the “curve balls.” Stay on top of industry, regulatory and market trends.  Use your team to assist with this process and create a knowledge pool within your organization.
  • Create the Vision – Based upon the knowledge of industry and market position changes, new payment models, clinical expectations, new regulations and more…work with your team across all levels to design what your organization will look like in 2018 and beyond.
  • Build and Sustain a Culture of Collaboration within your Organization – Create new leaders and subject matter experts within.  As a leader you cannot do this alone. Your team wants to help and they genuinely want to contribute to the greater good of the organization.
  • Determine Organization Clinical Readiness – Based upon the current market and future trends, assess your organization’s clinical competency, capabilities, capacity and integration across provider types for safer care transitions and referral opportunities.
  • Educate, Educate and Educate – It is vital to keep your team up-to-date on regulatory changes, their respective roles and how they can get involved. The key to all of this is effective education and communication.
  • Innovate, Partner and Collaborate – Being agile allows you to use your industry knowledge to design innovative strategies and services lines (creative solutions) to meet the new demands of health care today and beyond. Creating and guiding change is essential for operational success.

As a leader, your focus will fuel creativity within yourself and your team, which is an essential capability of being both strategic and innovative. How one balances the science of analysis and the art of creativity is key to your team’s ability turn a strategic vision into actionable tactics in 2018 and beyond.


Lisa Thomson,
Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer,
Pathway Health