CEO Report – Building Relationships for 100 Years
Posted on September 03, 2019
“If people like you, they’ll listen to you, but if they trust you, they’ll do business with you.” - Zig Ziglar
As our state Legislature returns from summer recess and gears up for a busy fall, we are reflecting on the ongoing celebration of the MHA’s 100 Year Anniversary.
We have celebrated with our hospitals and members of the MHA family throughout the year, and still to come is a special members-only ice cream social that will be hosted on the Michigan Capitol lawn on Tuesday, Sept. 24. This event presents an opportunity for our members and their government relations staff to meet with our elected officials and to thank them for their continued support of hospitals and healthcare. Any event at the Capitol conveys a level of significance, and over the years we have led advocacy days and rallies on public policy issues such as medical liability reform, Medicaid expansion, graduate medical education funding, prescription drug take-back programs, safety and quality initiatives, and many more. But this time, instead of convening at this prestigious venue to ask for assistance, our plan is to simply say thank you for the support we have received over the past century.
It is often said that associations are first and foremost in the relationship business. I strongly agree and believe that the MHA has been able to stand the test of time largely because of our ability to foster strong relationships. We saw those relationships on display at our recent Annual Meeting on Mackinac Island, where year after year hundreds of healthcare leaders from throughout the state eagerly convene. We saw those relationships on display in August, with a phenomenal turnout of former MHA employees who joined us at our newly renovated Spencer C. Johnson headquarters in Okemos for a special MHA alumni celebration. And as CEO of the MHA, I am privileged every day to see our amazing team in action, as they utilize their personal relationships with our members, elected officials, regulators, journalists, clinicians, and countless other thought leaders to relentlessly pursue our mission of advancing the health of individuals and communities.
The MHA has also stood the test of time because of our ability to speak with one voice in the healthcare community. Every acute care community hospital and system in the state is an active member of the MHA. This is not the norm, as few other associations at the state or national level have been able to achieve and maintain this “everyone in the tent” approach. We have strategically expanded our membership to include other organizations outside of the traditional acute care realm as well, as we evolve our focus on the full continuum. With such a diverse membership, we may not always agree on every issue, but the MHA has a strong track record of convening the key parties, gathering the relevant data, leading the discussion and navigating our way to consensus in the vast majority of cases. And once that consensus is reached, we have been incredibly effective in speaking with one voice – a voice that has become trusted in all circles in Michigan and beyond.
One hundred years. As I said at the beginning of the year, this is an accomplishment that not many associations – or institutions of any kind – are able to celebrate. For more detail, I invite you to check out our special celebration materials. To all those who helped the MHA get to this point, we salute you. It is now our challenge to build on the foundation set while we push to achieve better care for individuals and better health for Michigan’s communities.
As always, I welcome your thoughts.
Posted in: MHA Rounds