Individual and organizational resilience during a long-term crisis
In Episode 3 of Lead the Future, I spoke with Dr. Graham Sher, the CEO of Canada Blood Services. In our conversation, Graham maps out the big challenges faced by his organization as it worked the front lines of the Covid-19 pandemic, and his strategies for building personal and organizational resilience in order to make sure he, his teams, and his organization could continue to deliver. We discussed how being a long-standing CEO has helped him lead, but also challenged him to question his paradigms and ensure the best decisions were being made for the current context. Graham revealed his perspective on how the crisis has resulted in a collision of the present and the future, and how leaders must adapt to meet the current needs of the pandemic while still moving the long-term goals of the organization forward.
“The rich dialogue and engagement that our leaders are having on critical issues has been really important. We might have a perspective in the virtual ivory towers of our virtual office, but the front-line leaders, who are really on the call and in the face of driving the change, are bringing us a set of realities and perspectives into conversations.” Dr. Graham Sher, CEO, Canada Blood Services.
Meet the Leader: Dr. Graham Sher, CEO, Canada Blood Services
Graham has been with Canadian Blood Services since it began operations in September 1998. He first served as vice-president of medical, scientific, and clinical management and was appointed CEO in June 2001. Graham is a hematologist by training. He acquired his medical and doctoral degrees at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa, and his specialty certification at the University of Toronto.
Leadership Insights to Listen for:
- Mind shifts for short vs long term crisis: “Recognizing the long haul required us to say that we have to make sure we give ourselves personal time, physical wellbeing, and mental wellbeing.”
- Strategies for building individual and organizational resilience
- The shifting line between empathy and performance
- The need to rethink essential leadership capabilities
- Graham’s advice for future leaders