Do You Still Have a “Stay the Course” Board of Directors?

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Visionary LeadershipWe can’t think of an industry that is facing more change… turmoil actually…than healthcare. The Affordable Care Act. A fragile economy. Dramatic advances in research and technology. Heightened patient expectations. The tenuous relationship between healthcare providers and insurance companies. Hospital profit margins have been skinny for a long time. Make one bad decision these days and you’re gone.

In the 1990s, the primary strategy for most hospitals was to “stay the course.” If your hospital had been a general community hospital, you kept your locally focused board of directors, upgraded wings and services based on donor patterns, and struggled with the burden of providing so much charity care. Remember? One of the first generally acknowledged system-wide breakdowns was that hospital emergency rooms were replacing family physicians.

In the 1990s, if your hospital had already declared a specialty, investment and growth was incremental. A few major institutions declared specializations or leadership positioning and invested. Many perceived those bold moves as cocky at the time. But the investments made during strong economies have an impact on what happens to an institution during weak economic times. Think about MAYO, the Cleveland Clinic, Sloan Kettering, Johns Hopkins, and Massachusetts General.

It is very difficult for the leadership of “stay the course” hospitals to now step up, make very difficult decisions, commit to specializations, and compete. And often it is particularly difficult for the leadership of those hospitals to change the composition of their boards of directors and/or their executive teams.

Visionary leadership is needed. What would you do if you were the Chairman of the Board of one of the few hospitals located in the poorest/most dangerous city in the United States? Could you have envisioned, negotiated, funded, built, and promoted the new MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper Hospital in Camden, New Jersey?

Is your board composed of visionary leaders with connections, skills, and determination? Or are they “stay the course” incremental fearful followers?

About Aldonna Ambler:
Known as The Growth Strategist®, Aldonna Ambler built and grew a suite of companies to help midsized B2B companies achieve accelerated growth with sustained profitability® A Certified Speaking Professional (CSP), Ambler has addressed over 2000 audiences and hosted a syndicated online talk show about growth strategies for 9 years. As a growth financing intermediary, Ambler raised over $1 Bil dollars for midsized companies. The winner of over 2 dozen prestigious national and statewide "entrepreneur of the year" awards, Ambler is available to speak about “profitable growth during any economy” and/or serve on the board of a growth-oriented privately-held company.

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