9 best health systems to work for: Fortune

Fortune and Great Place to Work released their list of the “Best Workplaces in Health Care” on Sept. 7. 

Survey responses from more than 161,000 employees were analyzed to determine the best workplaces in the healthcare industry. To be considered for the list, organizations were required to be Great Place to Work-Certified and be in the healthcare industry. Learn more about the methodology here

Below are the nine best large health systems to work for, ordered by their corresponding number in the overall list of 30 organizations. Health systems with 1,000 or more employees were considered for the large category. 

1. Texas Health Resources (Arlington) 

3. Southern Ohio Medical Center (Portsmouth) 

5. Northwell Health (New Hyde Park, N.Y.) 

6. Baptist Health South Florida (Coral Gables) 

7. OhioHealth (Columbus) 

8. Scripps Health (San Diego) 

9. WellStar Health System (Marietta, Ga.) 

10. Atlantic Health System (Morristown, N.J.) 

21. BayCare Health System (Clearwater, Fla.) 

Fortune and Great Place to Work also released a list of the best small and medium healthcare organizations to work for. Organizations with up to 999 employees were considered for the small and medium category. No hospitals or health systems were listed in that category. 

The lost art of compromise

In nearly every facet of our lives, all of us are routinely put in the position of trying to settle disputes or disagreements, whether it be with our spouses or significant others, our children, our siblings, co-workers, neighbors, contractors — you name it. It’s part of everyday life. Conflicts arise and we figure out how to resolve them.

Unfortunately, in the politically toxic environment in which we now live, compromise is now perceived as a sign of weakness. Elected leaders are routinely criticized and attacked by fellow party members and their constituents for trying to find middle ground on any issue, particularly those rooted in ideology. The bipartisan agreement reached in Congress last week on gun safety was a rare and welcome exception. 

While they hold starkly different positions and come from states that are thousands of miles apart geographically and politically, Senators Chris Murphy, D-Conn., an outspoken proponent of stronger gun safety laws, and John Cornyn, R-Texas, a staunch Second Amendment advocate, found a way to set aside their differences and reach compromise on the so-called Bipartisan Safer Communities Act that was approved by the Senate 65-33 and the House by a margin of 234-193. President Joe Biden signed the legislation into law June 25. 

While the new law does not go nearly as far as Senator Murphy and most of his fellow Democrats wanted by, for instance, banning the sale of assault rifles or at least increasing the age to buy them, the willingness to finally get something done after 30 years of Congressional gridlock was a long-overdue victory for common sense

Bipartisanship has also been evident in Congressional support for military funding for Ukraine and the 2021 Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, but little else.

Despite the glimmer of progress in our nation’s legislative branch of government, it appears that polarization now has a firm grip on our nation’s top court. In trying to find middle ground in deliberations on Roe v. Wade, U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts sought this compromise with his five fellow conservatives and three liberals on the bench: support Mississippi’s prohibition against abortion after 15 weeks, but preserve some semblance of reproductive rights for women by not overturning Roe v. Wade or the court’s 1992 ruling in Planned Parenthood v. Casey

“The Court’s decision to overrule Roe and Casey is a serious jolt to the legal system — regardless of how you view those cases,” Roberts wrote. His incremental approach found no takers among his entrenched colleagues on either the right or the left. Hence, constitutional protections for abortions that had stood for nearly 50 years — and are supported by the vast majority of Americans — were stripped away in a 5-4 vote, leaving the power to individual states.

Unfortunately, bipartisanship can be equally elusive in state capitals around the country, which does not bode well for reproductive rights advocates in 21 states where abortion is now illegal or have “trigger bans” that will take effect within 30 days of the Supreme Court’s June 24 ruling.

Regardless of whether the issue is abortion or other divisive topics such as immigration, gun safety, voting rights, bail reform or LGBTQ rights, governors and state legislators of one controlling party or another routinely dig in and take intractable positions, leaving little or no room for negotiation. 

We would all be well served to reintroduce ourselves to the art of compromise, for the good of our family relationships, for the good of our respective professions, for the good of our country and society in general, and even for the good of our own personal health as we consider whether to consume that extra helping of food or another cocktail.

Moderation is key in our lifestyle choices and it could also go a long way in trying to find middle ground with those who have differing opinions. If adversaries are truly motivated to do the right thing, not political gamesmanship, they should always choose their words carefully, listen with an open mind and always be open to making concessions. In short, we should all start by embracing civility.

 The MacArthur Tenets

https://www.leadershipnow.com/macarthurprinciples.html

Douglas MacArthur was one of the finest military leaders the United States ever produced. John Gardner, in his book On Leadership described him as a brilliant strategist, a farsighted administrator, and flamboyant to his fingertips. MacArthur’s discipline and principled leadership transcended the military. He was an effective general, statesman, administrator and corporate leader.

William Addleman Ganoe recalled in his 1962 book, MacArthur Close-up: An Unauthorized Portrait, his service to MacArthur at West Point. During World War II, he created a list of questions with General Jacob Devers, they called The MacArthur Tenets. They reflect the people-management traits he had observed in MacArthur. Widely applicable, he wrote, “I found all those who had no troubles from their charges, from General Sun Tzu in China long ago to George Eastman of Kodak fame, followed the same pattern almost to the letter.

  Do I heckle my subordinates or strengthen and encourage them?

  Do I use moral courage in getting rid of subordinates who have proven themselves beyond doubt to be unfit?

  Have I done all in my power by encouragement, incentive and spur to salvage the weak and erring?

  Do I know by NAME and CHARACTER a maximum number of subordinates for whom I am responsible? Do I know them intimately?

  Am I thoroughly familiar with the technique, necessities, objectives and administration of my job?

  Do I lose my temper at individuals?

  Do I act in such a way as to make my subordinates WANT to follow me?

  Do I delegate tasks that should be mine?

  Do I arrogate everything to myself and delegate nothing?

  Do I develop my subordinates by placing on each one as much responsibility as he can stand?

  Am I interested in the personal welfare of each of my subordinates, as if he were a member of my family?

  Have I the calmness of voice and manner to inspire confidence, or am I inclined to irascibility and excitability?

  Am I a constant example to my subordinates in character, dress, deportment and courtesy?

  Am I inclined to be nice to my superiors and mean to my subordinates?

  Is my door open to my subordinates?

  Do I think more of POSITION than JOB?

  Do I correct a subordinate in the presence of others?

7 thoughts on great leadership

Why It Takes More Than Skills to Be a Great Leader

We find the questions, “What makes a great leader?” and “What does great leadership mean in practice?” to be really interesting.

We have seen, for example, the following types of people as leaders: (1) people who appear to have been born to lead and excel as leaders, (2) people anointed as leaders or future leaders who had bold personalities, a certain presence and/or great charisma disappoint completely as leaders, (3) hardworking, organized people without bold personalities who organizations may not have expected to be top leaders grow into their roles and lead organizations to great results.

The greatest leaders leave an organization better than they found it. They leave it in a position to thrive long after they are gone. They have the ability to deliver results today while improving and preparing the organization for tomorrow. Great leaders, as stated by some, have a vision and plan, can build great teams, can motivate the team to pursue and achieve the plan, can take in feedback and adjust the plan as needed.

Here are seven thoughts on great leadership.

1. Great leaders are engaged, excited and passionate about success. Great leaders remain excited about what they are doing and what their team is trying to accomplish. Teams sense whether a leader is engaged or not. It does not take long to detect. It is the unusual leader who can stay enthusiastic and in top form in a position for more than 10 to 20 years; for many, the attention span is less. The phrase “lame duck leader” often applies to those who are still in office despite losing their spark. When leaders find they are losing excitement or engagement, it is time to step down from leadership or take time to rediscover themselves. An excited and engaged leader is critical to success.

We should not confuse passion and excitement with a huge or “rah-rah” personality. A great leader can have a winning personality, and most have excellent people skills, but those two things are only part of the picture. Great leaders are more than mascots or faces of a company — they are engaged with their teams. They are constantly talking to, communicating with, seeing and visiting their teams. They know what is going on with their teams, they know what is going on with their key customers, and they know what is going on with the business.

2. Great leaders build teams and the next level of leaders. The greatest accomplishment of a leader may be building the next level of leadership in a way where the leader is less needed. This is so important to the organization and requires tremendous energy from current leadership, yet it’s not always a leader’s first and foremost goal.

An elite team can go exponentially further and accomplish a great deal more than an elite leader. Anyone who has built an organization beyond a few people understands the importance of great teams and colleagues. When a high-performing team is built, the leader remains important. However, more and more, you can identify a great leader or manager by how special their team is. When a team is magnificent, it is a lot easier to be a great leader or manager. A core concept in Jim Collins’ Good to Great is to build great teams and then set plans. If one has great people, a company or team can then accomplish all kinds of things.

There is a common misconception that leaders welcome their team’s elite performance because it means the leader can work less. We find this could not be further from the truth. Great leaders know that nobody likes working harder than their boss. This adage holds true whether a leader has been in the field for five years or 50. The scope and role of the leader may change as the team grows more adept, elite and accomplished. Exceptional leaders give others space to lead, opportunities to shine and chances to succeed, but this should not be misinterpreted as leaders stepping away out of ambivalence or putting their feet up.  

3. Great leaders have big goals and set clear plans. Great leaders set goals for their teams and organizations that are exciting, interesting and far bigger than themselves. The leader needs a goal that one can point to as, “This is what we are trying to be,” or, “This is what we are trying to accomplish.” There’s nothing worse than leaders who transparently appear to get ahead for themselves or accomplish their own goals versus the organization’s or team’s goals.

The late Apple CEO and co-founder Steve Jobs and former GE CEO Jack Welch are examples of great leaders who set big goals. Mr. Welch had the core goal to be No. 1 or No. 2 in any market — or not be in the market at all. It is also critical that the goal is well communicated to the team and that key decisions are consistent with the goal. No plan or strategy is perfect. However, most organizations and teams do far better with a plan and strategy than without. Often, the plan is imperfect but adjusted over time. Either way, in nearly every situation, an imperfect plan is far superior to no plan.

4. Great leaders generally don’t micromanage. High-caliber leaders develop great leaders and teams and allow their teams to excel, perform and grow. They constantly look at benchmarks, hold people accountable and follow up with them. However, on a day-to-day and moment-to-moment basis, their teams are given lots of latitude and autonomy. This is coupled with follow-up and looking at what is accomplished. Warren Buffett may be the world’s best example of a leader who has great CEOs, holds them accountable and doesn’t micromanage them.

Some of the best leaders we have seen recognize when they have an amazing leader working with them. In those situations, the best of leaders can set their egos aside and largely allow the next in line to take credit and lead.

5. Great leaders praise often and recognize contributions. A great leader understands that part of team-building is constantly looking for what people are doing well and encouraging more of it. Great leaders provide praise, recognize what is done well and motivate more of that to be done. They look for what people do exceptionally well, and they look to promote those doing great things. They are constantly looking for the next opportunity for people.

6. Great leaders are not afraid to make hard personnel decisions. The best leaders understand that not everyone is a fit for every job. They are not willing to tolerate mediocrity or toxicity. This doesn’t mean they have a quick trigger. It does mean that they constantly compare current performance to great performance and try to fit people in spots where their performance can excel. For example, someone who is not great at something might be given another try at a different role where they may shine. One of the best leaders I ever witnessed subscribed to the view that it was very hard to change people. He counseled to be fair and patient, but that it was easier to change the person than change a person. In essence, sometimes it’s easier to replace a person than change how a person behaves.

7. Great leaders are emotionally mature. Great leaders do not fly off the handle or make rash decisions, but they do follow their instincts. A remarkable leader does not react to every issue with a great deal of stress. Rather, he or she can take things in, move forward and keep a team on board. A leader’s ability to manage emotions — both his or her own and those of team members — is critical. While great leaders often act with urgency and intent, they too embrace common sense approaches of “sleep on it” or “no sudden movements” when faced with volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity. They recognize the repercussions of their decisions and movements, and in turn give them the time, thought and reflection they deserve.