Strategic Winning equals L.A.T.I.N
LEADERSHIP is first!
Leadership is vital to the success of any organization. Even if an organization has the best competitive strategy it will not succeed unless it has the right leadership.
Based on my experience and research leadership must fit the life cycle of the business and the type of strategy they selected. Let me illustrate what I am saying. There are four stages of the life cycle. Each requires a different type of leader.
- EMBRYONIC STAGE- This is the new venture stage and requires leaders who are will and able to take risks…the time for Risk-taker Leaders. The new emerging “retail outlet” leaders and those who are willing bet their careers on new types of technology or procedures are this type of leader.
- RAPID GROWTH STAGE- Caretaker Leaders take over from the risk-takers and provide stable and consistent growth and structure. This is the vast majority of leaders especially in healthcare where the major issues have been controlling costs and keeping their institutes up to date and able to compete. The problem with caretaker leaders is they get so committed to the current strategy, especially if it is working, that they ignore the external and competitive changes that ultimately lead to a decline in market position and revenues.
- MATURE and TURNAROUND STAGE- Surgeon Leaders are skilled in identifying businesses and areas are worth saving and pruning or divesting those that lack growth or are not compatible with the new direction of the business. There are many healthcare institutions going out of business and in the need of major surgery to reduce costs and be competitive. Many have decided to merge with other and form alliances to compete. Unfortunately many will fail because they are not able to become efficient and competitive because of too many bureaucrats and not enough risk-taking entrepreneurs.
- RAPID DECLINE STAGE- Undertaker Leaders are able to work with the key stakeholders and either divest the remaining organization or shut it down. This is happening in many cities where there are too many facilities and increasing costs and competition.
The message is that healthcare organizations must learn to adapt to major changes and be willing to seek and appoint leaders that fit their market, competitive and position on the life cycle.
Next I will describe the characteristics of each type of leader.