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Monday, November 9, 2015   |  

I've been recruiting senior leaders for organizations around the world for fifteen years. In that time, I’ve had the privilege of working with a broad range of extremely talented people, both clients and candidates. Over that time, there have been huge changes in healthcare organizations and what is needed from their Chief Executives.

There was a time when a Hospital Chief Executive was first and foremost an operator. Managing a self-contained clinical unit, micromanagement was common. Command and control styles and strict hierarchies characterized organizations that were driven by the need for operational and clinical grip.

A modern healthcare organization demands different things. The role of the Chief Executive is increasingly externally facing. Where the management of an acute organization was once focused on delivering to particular targets within set budgets, the drivers of success and failure are no longer contained solely within organizations.

Relationships with other healthcare providers, with payers, with regulators and across integrated groups are vital to success. This has placed an ever-growing emphasis on the ability of a Chief Executive to influence the landscape in which their organization operates, and to be able to develop and maintain a long-term strategy that is tenable in a changing world.

As we move towards larger, integrated healthcare systems with public listings or private backing, Chief Executives must also manage and satisfy the expectations of investors.

The pace of change that we are currently seeing in the GCC healthcare market is significant, and the blend of international management cultures that come together in the region means that there are many approaches to these challenges.

Over the next three months, in the run up to Arab Health 2016, my colleagues and I will be setting out to identify what it is that is shaping the approach of the region’s most successful Chief Executives. In the largest exercise of its kind conducted in the GCC, we will be holding a series of discussions with Chief Executives across the region to explore how their roles are changing, how they keep pace with that change, how they see the market, and what skills they feel will be needed in the future to succeed in this unique and demanding role.

We’ll be publishing the results in January, and look forward to sharing the insights given to us by those who will shape the healthcare sector in the coming year.