Learning & Development

4 Tips to Success for Incoming CEOs

Whether you’re stepping into the role of CEO at a new organization or stepping up at the same place, gauging how to make an immediate impact can often be challenging.

That’s a situation Phil Wright knows all too well after logging his first few months on the job at Memorial Regional Hospital South, which he joined this past October.

With the CEO position churning over across the country, new leaders every day are being tasked with coming in and leaving their imprint on their hospital or health system.

On a recent episode of the HealthLeaders Podcast, Wright shared what approach he recommends other incoming CEOs take in the early stages of assuming the role to ensure both immediate and long-term success.

Listen, Listen, Listen

Be attuned to what’s going on in your organization. Don’t be afraid to turn over rocks that haven’t been turned over just because that’s not what was done. Ask purposeful questions about how things are going with their job, how they do their job, and do if they have the resources they need to get the job done.

Resist Sudden Change

Coming in and making changes just to make changes is not always wise. Get in, get acclimated to the organization, get to know people, understand why certain things were done or not done, and then start gathering information to put yourself in a position to make decision. Don’t be afraid to sit back and listen and observe.

Strategically Delegate

Every leadership book will tell you delegation is important, but there can be situations where you delegate to the wrong person. You need to get the right project to the right person so you’re getting it efficiently done and you’re not jumping in to give a lot of feedback. It has to be in the wheelhouse of the person you’re delegating to.

Be Authentic

Have a level of authenticity and genuineness about who you are, your value system, how that relates back to your leadership style, and how you want patients to be taken care of. There’s a place for all leadership styles and there’s no one way to skin a cat, but you have to stay true to who you are and you can’t go wrong if you do that.

Jay Asser is the contributing editor for strategy at HealthLeaders. 

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