By Bobby Floyd, CEO, Healthcare
One of the challenges of being in a position of leadership is that you may not be an expert in all of the areas that you oversee. The more you advance your career and take on new challenges within an organization, the more likely it is that you will have responsibilities for which you do not have robust professional experience. While this may seem intimidating at first, there are certain steps you can take to ensure you are an effective leader, no matter the business.
Stick to your values
Regardless of what line of work you’re in, there are certain core values and leadership traits that are essential. Honesty, teamwork, conscientiousness, adaptability, communication, and a strong work ethic are all vital to any successful business. Anytime you are getting involved in something new, remember that you can always count on those values to drive success.
Lean on your team
For some, it can be hard to let go and admit that you are not the expert. It is vital that you practice humility, listen to your team, and partner with the people that are more experienced than you. Don’t be afraid to ask questions of those who have more experience and skill in the area than you do, and learn to solicit their feedback when it’s time to make decisions. Surround yourself with people you trust who are not afraid to share an opinion that might be different than yours!
Develop a learning plan
I like to sit down with those on my team whose skill set I greatly respect and ask them to help me put together a plan to learn new skills. When I began overseeing our culinary service line, I met with President of Culinary Dirk Noteboom and Vice President of Culinary Marta Hernandez to ask them to help me put together a strategy for obtaining the necessary skills for understanding our foodservice operations. I went through HHS’ culinary manager training program, obtained my ServSafeⓇ certification, and spent time rounding with many of our leaders in the hospitals that we serve. I spent four days at a startup for a new culinary account and worked alongside our team to get first-hand experience of the work that goes into opening a new account. Remember that lip service doesn’t work—you have to truly commit to taking steps to learn.
Jump in head first
It takes hard work and dedication to learn something new, and the best place to start is on the front lines. When given the opportunity to work in a new field, I have started off working at the hourly level alongside our frontline staff so that I can truly learn what a day in the life is like for them. When learning about our patient transport services, I put on the purple transport polo and spent a day shadowing team members and transporting patients. This helped me to get hands-on experience in the services I’m managing, gain a better understanding of the daily expectations and demands on team members, and understand what is expected of a transport leader.
The traits of a successful leader don’t always lie in the experience they have, but rather in their willingness to listen and to learn. Ensuring that your core values are in place, building a strong team to rely on, and taking the steps needed for professional development, will all help you to succeed in being a effective leader, no matter the area you oversee. The leaders I’ve respected the most are the ones who roll up their sleeves and do the work, and that is exactly what I aim to do as a leader as well.
To learn more about our healthcare service lines:
Bobby Floyd serves as Chief Executive Officer for the Healthcare Division of HHS, providing leadership and helping to ensure operational consistency and integrity across service line. In addition, he works directly with job site managers to implement and improve processes and systems and to help increase customer satisfaction at HHS’ partner facilities.