The first time my leader asked me this question, my answer was simple:

Avoid buses.

Not exactly his point. His point, as he explained it, was this:

Unexpected things happen….good and bad:

  • You get sick and can’t work.
  • You get an offer you can’t refuse for another job.
  • You win the lottery.
  • You get hit by a bus.

Realistically, you can’t avoid them all. So you’d better plan and prepare.

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Many organizations have a succession planning process for top executives, but they overlook the lower levels. A robust system would identify entry-level employees who have the talent to be great supervisors, supervisors who can become great department heads, and so on. You’d wind up with a vertical slice of high potential future leaders. Unfortunately, most organizations don’t invest much to identify and develop mid-level managers. The goal of this post is to help you realize the magnitude of the opportunity here.

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I wish everyone making leadership development decisions could hear this observation I recently heard from a client:

“I think the whole approach of saying, ‘We’re going to develop your weak natural behaviors,’ is where all the leadership development dollars are going down the toilet.”

Let that soak in.

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There is a race to provide exceptional health care with an emphasis on continuing to improve patient satisfaction and care. As indicated by consistent health care industry trends and pressures, like meeting Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems Survey (HCAHPS) goals, many are enraptured by the growing need to hire more health care professionals while providing patients with the best care. In the midst of these gravitational forces, there is a struggle between the need to fill open positions and holding out for the most talented individuals. This struggle is not easy.

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For some, making a New Year’s resolution is not only a tradition, but it is a way to make a promise to change a bad habit or to develop a positive one. So, if your New Year’s resolution is to learn additional skills, what should they be? And why?

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