• Article
  • February 8, 2017

Leadership Tip: Don't be Afraid to Apologize

And, don’t forget to make things right.

Early in her leadership career, Lisa Carter, CEO of Niswonger Children's Hospital in Johnson City, Tennessee, says she made a big mistake with the schedule in the pediatric intensive care unit. "The nurses were in a mess," she says. "As soon as I found out, I went straight to the unit and apologized. Ending there would have been acceptable, but I knew my mistake created chaos for my team members." Carter stayed with them the entire day and owned the mistake. A week later, a seasoned nurse told her she earned emotional collateral with team members that day. "By apologizing and owning it, I showed I was committed to them," Carter says. "Those simple actions built trust and respect."

Do you have a leadership tip or lesson learned you want to share? Email magazine@childrenshospitals.org.