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  • drnicoladepaul

Values-based innovation & leadership

I had the opportunity to fly to the Bay area for a primary care innovation workshop, where I met with 50ish primary care leaders motivated to learn new strategies to create systemic well-being and connect deeply with their teams. This was such a connective and inspiring experience for me. I love watching as people have lightbulb moments that help them pivot towards more creative and relational ways of doing things.


One of my biggest takeaways was how empowered frontline supervisors are when they learn direct (and kind) communication and boundary-setting skills. So simple. Yet such a powerful tool to transform team dynamics.


The week closed out with another awesome masterclass! I love teaching, and I love learning from each of you about the real-world challenges that complicate transformation in healthcare systems. A theme that has come up in these sessions is the challenge of getting the highest levels of healthcare leadership on board with prioritizing employee well-being and cultural transformation. I wish I had a simple answer for this one, but I don’t.


For me, this challenge is representative of the core tension in healthcare transformation (or maybe in life). The tension between what we can control and change (ourselves) and what we cannot control (other people). Transformation is possible, and I believe it starts with each of us taking full responsibility for what we can influence. And yes, this feels unsatisfying. I have come to trust that transformation happens even when we feel discouraged.


I would love to hear your thoughts on this and please chime in if you have effective strategies to help the highest levels of leadership get on board with your ideas.


What’s new on Menders?


For Menders episode 26, I had the opportunity to explore values-based innovation and team leadership with Dr. Dan Drozd, the Chief Medical Officer of Picnic Health.


In this episode, Dan shares his non-linear career journey from English major to software engineer, infectious disease physician, to CMO. And he shares the leadership lessons he’s learned along the way through coaching, self-reflection, and openness to feedback from his team.


As a result of this intentionality, Dan has developed a framework for team leadership that maximizes shared decision-making and values-based empowerment. We explore how leading with values can impact both the leader and the team and creates space for everyone to operate at their highest level.


Dan also reflects on some challenges of creating a sustainable work culture in a virtual environment. And, he shares some of the innovative strategies that he and Picnic Health have tried to promote lasting relationships, that allows him to connect with his team and promote relationships between team members while making an effort to create a meaningful and connected workplace.


  • How his personal family history influenced his commitment to healthcare.

  • Why taking the time to have deeply personal conversations with our employees is a critical team leadership skill in the virtual world.

  • And what strategies he recommends to flatten the hierarchy and promote values-based decision-making at all levels of a healthcare organization!


I hope this conversation inspires you to consider your values and how you communicate what matters to you and your organization to your healthcare team. When our “why” is shared, we have the capacity to connect and create meaningful innovation.


My favorite quotable moment from this episode!


“I think what is important is modeling being vulnerable and real with people…that gives other members of the team impetus and space to do that as well…I want people to make mistakes, if we’re not screwing things up we’re probably not making a lot of progress, probably not taking enough risks.”


Dr. Dan Drozd (Menders, episode 26)


Additional Resources:

Be sure to sign up for the latest Mending Health Systems Masterclass: Three mistakes that are costing your health system millions…and how to avoid them! We’ll be doing a deep dive on the true costs of burnout and turnover and problem-solving strategies to create real change now. Registration is live. I hope you can join us!


Want to connect?

Please take the time to share your thoughts with me. I would love to hear from you! I can be found on Facebook, LinkedIn, and at Mending Health Systems. And of course, you’re always welcome to Book a call!

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