I truly believe leaders are responsible for establishing the environment in which people work in; as a physician-in-training, I recognize that one day, I will serve as the leader of the healthcare team. I will play a strong role in my team’s motivation level. I think there are some key takeaways that can be exhibited by a medical student on rotations. As we transition from medical students to residents to attending physicians, I think creating a positive environment should be important to each of us. So, let’s talk about what we can influence.
Within a Leader’s Sphere of Influence
- Positive Attitude: This is where believing in the vision and mission of an organization comes into play. If you don’t buy in, then no one else will. Also, there’s something to be said about people who exude confidence, kindness, happiness, and authenticity. It’s important to me to lead in that way, and people notice. Gratitude goes a long way. John Quincy Adams said it best, “if your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader.”
- Setting Goals and Priorities: Your team is counting on you to lead the pack in a way that is collaborative. To do so, one must be willing to set priorities and goals for the team to achieve success. For example, dividing up the patient list and establishing clear roles can be really helpful before rounds. Do this at the start of each month when you’re with a new team. Transparency is also important; it gives everyone an opportunity to understand what they are getting into and where they play a role.
- Providing Feedback: Constructive feedback isn’t always easy to give or receive, but it’s so important. Destructive feedback is toxic, and I would never endorse that type of feedback. It’s nice to recognize members of your team, and it’s also important to address the downfalls in a constructive, respectful manner.