Iowa Specialty Hospital

A Message from the CEO - April '22

April 13, 2022

We were supposed to have strategic planning with our Boards and Leaders in March and April.  Every time it gets “weathered” out.  God, in His infinite wisdom, doesn’t want us to plan for some reason.  We were explaining our projects to the Providers last week and to some guests from another hospital this week, and every time we talk about them - I’m blown away … we are doing a lot.  The other hospital leaders were talking about their well-mapped-out plans and how metrics are met, and they used a lot of big words and strategic language.  I feel our approach is more organic … if opportunities arise, we tend to say “yes” if it’s not too crazy. 

“Ok Steve - this doesn’t fill me with a ton of confidence on your leadership.  You’re saying you basically just throw spaghetti at the wall and see if it sticks?  This is your decision matrix?”  Not really, but … 

Running a business is different in the rural areas.  A key to being successful is the ability to utilize and trust your intuition.  I used to go sailing with friends.  The captain (his name was Ig) of the vessel said the cool thing about 50 foot sail boats versus the big cruise lines is that the small boats can bob and weave and avoid the waves or rocks or bad weather more easily.  They’re very seaworthy, and they can turn on a dime. The big boats, however, take a lot of planning with how to navigate the environment.  I think this is kind of the same in running an independent rural healthcare system.  We dart and weave, and we take advantage of the winds and opportunities.  

I’m also reminded of the duck on the water.  It’s moving gracefully across the pond, but underneath it’s paddling like crazy.  We’ve made a lot of decisions and have grown a lot over the past couple of years.  To some it may look like we are impulsive, but please know we are paddling like crazy.  Yes, we seize upon opportunities, but we have a lot of research and intuition and experience behind our “quick” decisions.

Personally, I haven’t heard criticisms or comments on our growth from the community.  I think today’s article is more for me - my own personal pep talk.  Like in a marathon or a long race - it’s easy to stop when you’ve hit the proverbial wall, but success lies when you’ve busted through and have come out on the other side victorious.  

Stay the course.  It’s all good.

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