The teams that run businesses experience wide swings of expertise and talent over time. Individual stars and great team players come and go and business schools devote course after course to building and sustaining productive teams.


     On the way to building my teams, I worked on some great ones and some not so good. As a chronic student, I also sat through three graduate schools between 1975 and 1986, studying health management, as applied to large hospitals, small ones, health systems and, finally the world of start-up, entrepreneur and private sector manager/owner health care.


     Recently, the concept of “read only” as applied to a Microsoft word document in which one setting allows the user to correct, edit, add to, whatever, the existing document and another setting (“read only”) that permits reading (duh) but no ability to change any material, caught my attention as a metaphor for good management.


     If I gather the best team possible, then I really have to do very little active management. I provide them with resources of all sorts and do what they need me to do, rather than have them do what I think they need to be doing.


    We’re in the middle of several big projects that move an organization along as it grows, matures and changes itself to keep up a position of leadership in its field.

Some are normal upgrades of facilities after ten years; other are innovations in the delivery of our services to our guests, their families, our outside vendors and our staff.


    It’s a year (maybe two) when we’ll see if the best managers are doing their best work and making each other’s jobs easier.


    If I get it right, then I’ll be doing a lot of “read only” work, in which I try to keep up with the changes, facilitate them and make sure that the managers bringing new services on line get credit (and are rewarded) for their work.


     Now and then, I may need to be down in the weeds, as the cliché goes but mostly, if I get it right, I’ll be up in the cloud (a real place these days) looking ahead at the next wave of change in geriatrics and figuring out where the Fields belong in the wave after the next wave.




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