How is Leading SickCare Different?

Many executives and digipreneurs think that because they have had a track record of success in non-sickcare ventures that the skills are applicable to sickcare. They are sadly mistaken as many learn too late. They run head on into the non-interoperability monster.

Likewise leading sick care organizations is different from leading other non-sick care organizations for many reasons:

1. Different culture and ethos. The ethics and ethos of medicine is different from the ethics and ethos of business. 

2. More stakeholders. In sickcare, there are many customers, consumers and end users, not just one and for any product or service to success, it often has to have a value proposition that satisfies the interests of most of them.

3. Inevitable conflict of interests. Conflicts of interest are inevitable and include fee for service models. employed models and physician entrerpreneurs starting and growing their own ventures with mimimal transparency or disclosure to patients.

4. Highly regulated industry. Sick care is not alone in being highly regulated. However, since patients lives are on the line, the level of scrutiny and oversight is highly visible and constantly changing. 

5. In most instances, you don't sign the follower's paycheck. That means they are more independent and do not necessarily have the same incentives to engage.

6. Lack of institutional affiliation or engagement.  Most doctors, even those employed, have minimal affiliation or engagement with hospitals. They affiliate with specialty societies and peers and it is therefore more difficult to align them with organizational goals.

7. High level of scepticism about administrators who don't add value to patient care. There is the perception that even physician administrators, as soon as they move from the OR suite to the C-suite, become one of "them" and they lose credibility.

8. Difficulty with aligning multiple stakeholders and what trips their triggers. 

9. Agner and sense of resentment due to increasing lack of control. Doctors feel they have lost control of their profesion and are not shy about pushing back. 

10. Leaders simply are not giving the worker bees the attention, appreciation and affection they deserve. Despite lip service, doctors see the downsides of the MacDonaldization of care. Actions speak louder than words.

Sick care is different. Leading sick care organizations is harder. 

Arlen Meyers, MD. MBA is the President and CEO of the Society of Physician Entrepreneurs at