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Faculty member's book profiles successful health care leaders

Mon, 09/13/2010 - 4:36pm
Arizona State University

Jack Gilbert, director of the Master of Health Care Innovation program in the College of Nursing & Health Innovation, has co-written "The Heart of Leadership: Inspiration and Practical Guidance for Transforming Your Health Care Organization," just published by the American Hospital Association Press. The book, co-written with consultant Barbara Balik, challenges the view that new tools, processes and knowledge are enough to deliver the highest levels of safety, quality performance, employee engagement and financial health.

The book explores the values and work environments that 10 transformational leaders have fostered, defining a transformational leader as one whose organization has achieved and sustained stronger and more positive results than most of their peers faced with similar circumstances. These leaders come from a variety of backgrounds, work environments and geographies. Four are nurses, three are physicians, and three are administrators by background. Their work environments include multi-hospital systems, community hospitals, academic medical centers, all coming from different parts of the United States.

The book contains a profile of each leader in their own words in which they share their personal backgrounds, life-shaping experiences and individual beliefs. The 279-page book also draws overarching themes from these interviews to provide guidance to “grow” leaders as well as to enhance boards of trustees’ CEO and senior executive selection and hiring processes.

Barbara Balik is the principal of Common Fire Healthcare Consulting in Albuquerque, New Mex., and a senior faculty member at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement. She previously was hospital chief executive officer in an integrated health system, a patient care executive/chief nursing officer, an executive leader of quality and safety within a large healthcare system, and a maternal-child health nurse. Gilbert has written three previous books.

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