Taking an organisation from good to great requires disciplined people who engage in disciplined thought and take disciplined action, he told an audience of around 500 delegates during the first evening of the APAC Forum 2016 at the Hilton Hotel in Sydney.
Going from good to great requires a “level five” leader, which he described as someone with personal humility combined with a ferocious will on behalf of an overall cause.
Change doesn’t begin with vision, he argued, but rather with “a willingness to confront the brutal facts.” He also encouraged people to operate in their personal “hedgehog” to achieve success.
“[Do] the one big thing that you can do distinctly, consistently better,” he said. Disciplined action is also required for organisational success. Moving in an intelligent and consistent direction, as opposed to constantly lunging for new projects, is the only way to build something sustainably great, he said.
Donor shortages must drive innovation and collaboration
Professor John Fraser of Prince Charles and St Andrew’s War Memorial Hospital spoke of the chronic shortage of donor hearts and lungs and the need for alternative intervention for patients with these failing organs. “There’s a massive epidemic of heart and lung disease that we can’t fix with organ donation,” he said.
The answer, he told the audience, is in the development of artificial organs. “[We need] the integration of engineering and biology into broken hearts and broken lungs.”
Professor Fraser showed pictures of a live sheep with a mechanical heart, and suggested it is possible for similar technology to be developed for humans. He implored the health profession to collaborate outside of silos towards solutions. “There are patients dying that should not be dying.”
Look at the evidence
The great grandson of evolutionist Charles Darwin, Chris Darwin, took to the InSight stage wearing a fake bird on his shoulder, to share some key messages of his famous ancestor.
Mr Darwin, of the conservationist organisation Darwin’s Unfinished Business, encouraged audience members to “pay special attention to verifiable evidence that counteracts one of your beliefs.”
He described his great grandfather’s quest to prove that animals and plants can be changed through selective breeding by finding the evidence, even when this fact wasn’t widely understood.
“It is only when we can face the possibility that some of our most cherished beliefs are wrong that we can become powerful change makers.”
Putting the patient at the centre
Speaking from India via video, Dr Devi Shetty described an insurance scheme whereby 11 cents a month allowed one million poor farmers access to some kind of surgery. To meet demand, doctors need to be trained differently, and in a way that is far more hands on. “The future is not an extension of the past,” he said.
Two primary care doctors rounded up Insight. UK GP, Dr Junaid Bajwa, walked on to the stage with a chair, representing the patient. He spoke of the role of GPs in imparting hope to their patients and the importance of continually asking questions of a broken system.
While family physician and director of the Center for Excellence in Primary Care in the US, J Nwando Olayiwola, shared mistakes made during the US transformation of primary care to create primary centred medical homes. Dr Olayiwola urged delegates to consult patients in any form of care design, and cautioned against viewing technology as a silver bullet.