I’ve spent the better part of my career trying to thread the needle on difficult issues. Sometimes it works and other times it doesn’t. It’s becoming increasingly difficult to do.

 

If you follow me on social media then you know I mostly share informational stories that relate to healthcare, the economy and leadership. It’s the only thing that I could think to do in the face of so much misinformation. 

 

I’ve recently completed a Google certification to learn more about the appropriate use of digital media. A Linked In employee reached out to give me positive feedback on my feed. I don’t know if it was coincidental or not, but it was nice to get their feedback.

 

I’d like to share a few key takeaways from the last month and how it applies to you.

 

Five insights for corporate leaders trying to thread the needle

 

1/ Engage in social media

 

Social media gives us all a voice and it is up to us to decide how to use it. When you share a story or an opinion, it invites others to present an opposing view. Many, particularly those in corporate roles, are scared to share or comment anything meaningful. It’s unfortunate because it’s a missed opportunity to engage in civil discourse. A skill we all need to sharpen now.

 

 

2/ Train and retain employees

 

Continuous improvement should come from within. Leading edge companies have been investing in their employees from inception. You may already know that Google allocates company time for employees to explore their ideas and many of those ideas have lead to new solutions. Most healthcare executives still don’t make those kinds of investment in their employees for fear of loosing their talent or fear of being displaced. As a result, attracting talent is becoming harder to do.

 

 

3/ Look outside your company for solutions

 

Commercial algorithms are a great training tool in structuring data and algorithms. The healthcare industry is creating so much data but clearly not realizing the full value of it. Cleaning up structured data and continuously refining information systems to make use of the data is worth the investment of time and resources.

 

 

4/ Challenge your old policies

 

Venture Capitalists [VCs] are discovering that even the most talented employees within their portfolio companies have a second job or side hustle. Outside interests are often perceived as a threat by corporate managers, but VCs are accepting it so that it’s out in the open. 

 

It’s an important shift from the idea that employees with more than one job are less committed to the success of the company. Side hustles and second jobs can facilitate skill development that benefit the company and the wellbeing of the employee.

 

 

5/ Embrace our new reality

 

We’re living in world with pandemics, whiplash weather and an increasing wealth gap that requires a new approach to everything we do. Leading edge companies are rising to the challenges that will reshape the healthcare industry from the outside in. Rather than treating disease, they are focused on eradicating it and curing it.

 

On that note, I am reading An Elegant Defense, The Extraordinary New Science of The Immune System. It is a good one to read to learn how to keep your immune system healthy and prevent autoimmune disorders. If you let your imagination run, you’ll see some of the parallels between the immune system and corporate life.