Heart and Soul Inspired Leaders in Healthcare

A heart and soul inspired leader is any individual, regardless of age, regardless of role, regardless of title; who embraces his/her personal gifts, strengths and passions to positively impact others and change the world.

Many view leadership as a series of traits such as honesty, humility, grace, authenticity, etc. While each is necessary to be a great leader, individuals without these are not heart and soul inspired leaders. Heart and soul inspired leaders appear in all organizations at all levels, and healthcare is a prime location. We may not view healthcare professionals as leaders, yet many exhibit heart and soul inspired leadership daily.

Medical assistants take vitals, room patients and ask many questions. Are they friendly? Are they engaging? Do they make patients feel welcome and comfortable? Nurses need to effectively communicate with patients and family; and serve as a liaison between patients, providers and other healthcare staff. Nurses are the glue in a healthcare network. Are they authentic? Do they provide honest feedback? Are they responsive?

Providers are viewed as leaders; although all are not heart and soul inspired leaders. Do they invest time to explain things to patients and family? Do they express humility and grace during discussions? One of HFM’s orthopedic physicians commonly emails employers, is responsive, and provides his cell number. This is heart and soul inspired leadership.

Administrators are also viewed as leaders; however, not all are heart and soul inspired leaders. Are they encouraging? Engaged in communities? Do they empower others to make decisions? Do they elevate an organization?

The end of the heart and soul inspired leader definition is “to positively impact others and change the world.” This is a scary statement to many; although we can each positively impact others in small ways such as holding the door open; or large ways by helping save lives.

Heart and soul inspired leaders are like Navy SEALs. Every organization has a select group of leaders who can truly inspire others and change the world for patients, co-workers and communities. Everyone is capable of being a heart and soul inspired leader. It is a choice.

Being a heart and soul inspired leader isn’t easy. There are good days and bad days. Days when we truly are heart and soul inspired leaders; and days we fail miserably – despite our best efforts. Being someone who desires to positively impact lives and change the world comes with sacrifice. It comes with criticism, ridicule and fear. One person can’t do it alone.

Throughout history, it has been demonstrated that leadership is about change, humility and service to others. What differentiates heart and soul inspired leaders from other leaders is their heart.

Seek out organizations and individuals who exhibit these qualities as this is where the benefit is achieved. Be great and inspire others to be great!

About the author.

David Yeghiaian is the interim vice president of strategy at Holy Family Memorial. Reach him at dyeghiaian@hfmhealth.org.

Learn more about HFM Primary Care here.