Over the past few years, children’s hospitals around the country have placed increased emphasis on preserving the well-being of health care providers—and the COVID-19 pandemic has amplified the importance of this for leaders of these institutions. “The culture of leadership is really important in terms of promoting teams’ well-being,” says Maureen Leffler, D.O., M.P.H., chief wellness officer, Nemours Children’s Health. “It’s one of the things that we know can impact burnout for clinical groups.”
Find the leader within to promote wellness
Leffler credits Nemours with its commitment to caregiver wellness—including the creation of the CWO post she’s held since July 2020. But she says all clinicians have the power to bolster their own well-being by harnessing their inner leader. “The leadership skills and tools we have and can develop ourselves are the things that can keep us afloat,” Leffler says. “They can help us forge the best path forward for ourselves as professionals.”
Leffler says cultivating the qualities of a good leader fosters job satisfaction and mitigates the drivers of burnout. “Things like leadership skills, self-awareness and self-management, being empathetic and understanding groups,” Leffler says. “All that is incredibly important for your own professional fulfillment.”
Consider others’ vantage points
While learning to expand your own internal leadership skills is a significant step, Leffler adds having a heightened awareness of those around you is crucial in finding satisfaction on the job. “One of the most important things I am learning more and more is the importance of recognizing that your own perspective and experiences are biased,” Leffler says. “Understanding that, and then really trying to pause it so you can listen and appreciate the perspectives and experiences of others, is very important.”
Read more about the evolution of children’s hospitals’ leadership teams so their organizations can stay ahead, achieve their goals and do what they do best—caring for others.