Advancements in technology have profoundly affected the ways in which we work and live, delivering new levels of automation, efficiency and economies of scale. The challenge for many leaders is finding the most effective ways to leverage technology to fuel competitive growth for their organizations.
Tina V. Murphy, Chief Revenue Officer at Global Healthcare Exchange (GHX) understands the role and power of technology in advancing industry-wide change. Tina joined GHX in 2000 and is responsible for overseeing all customer-facing functions including global product, sales, marketing, business development and customer operations. At GHX, Murphy has built a culture that values a diversity of thought and perspectives from its employees and customers.
GHX is a healthcare business and data automation company that provides cloud-based supply chain solutions, analytics and services. The company’s mission is to enable a more operationally efficient healthcare supply chain that will help organizations reduce, not shift, the cost of doing business, paving the way to delivering patient care more effectively and affordably.
Murphy’s ability to drive innovation, meaningful change and strategic alignment across diverse stakeholders has provided a solid foundation for GHX’s continued growth. And this approach is not only beneficial for the company, but also, the healthcare industry.
The healthcare industry is in the midst of unprecedented change. The shift to value-based care, where hospitals are rewarded for the value they provide patients, not just paid for the services performed, has put the emphasis on the cost-quality equation, forcing organizations to rethink the business implications of how they function. At GHX, Murphy and her colleagues are focused on what they call “the new business of healthcare.”
“The question facing the industry is how do we remove cost without affecting the quality care delivered to patients?,” said Murphy.
One thing is clear: A tremendous opportunity exists for the healthcare supply chain to become a greater strategic asset through evidence-based, patient-centered decision-making for the products and supplies used in the delivery of care.
Murphy’s goal is for GHX to be the industry leader in facilitating ongoing partnerships with the thousands of providers and suppliers in its community as the company works to bend the healthcare cost curve and help improve patient care.
She adds, “This is healthcare. It matters.”
Embracing the Struggle
There isn’t a playbook for the transition the healthcare industry is currently undergoing. As Murphy and her team forge ahead, she takes inspiration from Ben Horowitz’s book, The Hard Thing about Hard Things, in which he outlines, ‘the struggle.’ The struggle is a scenario in which a compelling and purpose-filled vision has been laid out, teams work day and night in service of that vision, and yet a heart-sinking feeling looms – that the outcome isn’t going to materialize as planned. Murphy believes embracing the struggle while staying steadfast about the end goal is critical to success. Further, she believes roadblocks happen for a reason, and the ability to persist through challenges ultimately brings better results. Teams that begin tentatively or view the struggle as a failure are missing an opportunity for growth.
For Murphy, maintaining hope and faith in a mission despite the challenges are critical to success.
“Even when all hope seems lost, we can still choose our thoughts, we can still choose our responses to situations, and we can persevere in ways we never thought possible. The struggles that arise as we pursue our goals force us to be creative, to adapt, to innovate, and that’s where the real change happens,” said Murphy. This is precisely why she believes the greatest leaders have a unique opportunity to inspire hope around a mission that energizes the human spirit, encourages resilience and instills a strong sense of purpose.
Murphy adds, “All of the greatest breakthroughs have one thing in common: they were sparked in a culture that not only leaves space for, but also invites diversity of thought.”
Murphy emphasizes the importance of welcoming a wide range of opinions and experiences to spark the strategic thinking and creativity that are the hallmarks of innovation. Recent reports from Harvard and Yale have proven that diverse teams deliver better outcomes to a company’s customers and to the bottom line.
Leading with Heart and Authenticity
Providing steady, and inspiring, leadership is important to facilitating change or managing challenges. Murphy is quick to remind colleagues that employees aren’t necessarily looking for a leader with all the answers. In her view, attempting to adopt that persona would be inauthentic and misleading. Murphy believes strongly that people want and respond to authenticity and honesty. “Today we are being asked to lead through unprecedented times. The COVID-19 pandemic is forcing leaders to balance their own fears and uncertainties, with a perceived need to stand tall and lead,” says Murphy. “There’s great strength that comes from vulnerability. Brene Brown describes vulnerability and authenticity being at the root of human connection and today, that is what society needs from our leaders.”
Murphy also encourages leaders to be present for their teams and over-communicate through this difficult time.
“We need our leaders to deliver a clear call to action, while having the strength to acknowledge the difficult facts before us, and still lead from a place of hope,” says Murphy.
Avoid Being Self Limiting
Murphy’s path to developing her leadership philosophy was hard won. Early in her career, Murphy says, she made the mistake of accepting too many opinions about what it meant to be a woman in the workplace. For instance, when she was told that women are overly emotional, she accepted that as fact and made a mental note that she needed to overcome that instinct. Murphy says it takes time to find one’s voice and truly understand that unquestioningly accepting others’ beliefs limits your potential. Today, she extols the powerhouse combination of knowledge and intuition women bring to the workforce to help their companies navigate complex situations.
U.S. venture capital investment in female-owned businesses hit an all-time high at the end of 2019. Companies are adding more women to their boards to celebrate the measurable power of diversity of thought. Murphy is excited by this shifting business climate and encourages young women, and men, to challenge perceptions about their potential.
Murphy adds, “Don’t fall prey to outdated belief systems. Be bold and create a career plan that represents your individual vision of success.”
Embrace and Inspire the Next Generation
As she looks ahead, Murphy is inspired by the enthusiasm of younger colleagues. She notes that this next generation of employees is hungry to be inspired around a mission worth fighting for. Today’s leaders would be wise to fulfill that desire and Murphy advises leaders to create a clear corporate vision that brings to life a sense of purpose, and more important, help employees understand how their work links to that mission.
Murphy adds, “We all want to know that our work matters.”
She also advises leaders to get in the trenches and work side by side with their teams to solve the complex problems to help them earn credibility and respect.
Murphy’s parting thoughts for current future leaders is to always lead with strength, conviction and passion, but never fear showing your vulnerability. “It’s what makes a leader human and relatable. Having the strength to show that vulnerable side is what will build teams that will walk through fire for you,” she says.