The Long Shadow – How to Follow a Superstar

A Tennessee democrat who was firmly committed to the Union, Andrew Johnson had a distinguished career as congressman, senator and governor of his state. Hoping to send a message of reconciliation to the rebellious South, Lincoln chose Johnson as his vice president in 1864. Johnson’s debut on the national stage went poorly, with a rambling… Read More The Long Shadow – How to Follow a Superstar

Discovery and Innovation in the Business of Health Care

Discovering things previously unknown is one of the most important, and most enjoyable, things that anyone can do. Most people do it every day, whether as simple as finding a new restaurant they love or discovering a new comet in the heavens. Fundamentally, new discoveries come from observation, analysis, and experimentation. A husband looking for… Read More Discovery and Innovation in the Business of Health Care

Formal Business Visits and Town Halls

Management gurus since the 1970s have taught leaders to “manage by walking around (MBWA)”; getting out of the office and into the workplace to see for themselves what was going on in their organization. It is a very old idea. Generals such as Napoleon Bonaparte and business tycoons such as Henry Ford were legendary for… Read More Formal Business Visits and Town Halls

Diversity – Promises Kept and Promises Broken

As chief medical officer for the DeWitt Health Care Network in 2009, I interviewed all physicians assigned to our hospital who were planning to leave the Army. During a conversation with a young pediatrician, I inquired about her reasons for going. She was born in America of Indian parents in New York and was a… Read More Diversity – Promises Kept and Promises Broken

Encouragement When Nothing Seems Right

Last week one of the women who works for me was despondent. She is approaching retirement and has worked on a major project for many years, but some people in another organization seem to oppose it at every turn. “It has become hard to come to work” she said, “and it is hard not to… Read More Encouragement When Nothing Seems Right

Administrative Support – How to Manage a Meeting

“Last week’s meeting would have started on time, but the starting time wasn’t emailed out until one hour before, so the participants, the few which showed up, straggled in and began work 15 minutes late. The room was hot and muggy from a recent air conditioner breakdown. The chair opened the meeting but the minutes… Read More Administrative Support – How to Manage a Meeting

Temperaments Model of Personality and Leadership

Most experts agree that leadership is the single most important factor in the success of any organization. Libraries of books, thousands of coaches, and scores of organizations exist to help people become better leaders. Tomes decry the lack of leadership in all areas of life. An Arab proverb is said to read “Better an army… Read More Temperaments Model of Personality and Leadership

Political Correctness and Cultural Sensitivity

Since you cannot have a discussion without first defining what you are talking about, let’s begin with definitions: Merriam Webster online suggests that Political Correctness means “conforming to a belief that language and practices which could offend political sensibilities (as in matters of sex or race) should be eliminated.” Wikipedia suggests that “Cross cultural sensitivity… Read More Political Correctness and Cultural Sensitivity

Healing the Health Care Cost Conundrum

The military health care system is different in many ways from the civilian system, but a primary difference is the income incentive. Simply put, health care providers and other medical professionals are not paid based on the number of patients that they see or the number of procedures that they do. Instead they receive a… Read More Healing the Health Care Cost Conundrum

Making Meetings Matter

How to make formal meetings efficient and effective to achieve organizational goals. Despite the triumph of American arms in the Revolutionary War, by 1787 the former colonies, loosely affiliated under the Articles of Confederation, were suffering severe setbacks at home and abroad. The Articles allowed only for a very weak central government which was incapable… Read More Making Meetings Matter