Today the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association (HBA) celebrates “Rising Stars” in the healthcare industry. The women nominated represent trailblazers in their communities— those who advance health, society and ultimately change lives.

HBA’s “Rising Stars” are leaders, and while they are being celebrated for their overall commitment to improving people’s lives, it only takes ONE life to become a catalyst for change. Having a positive impact on another person is one of the most rewarding experiences we will have in this life. The hope is that by igniting passion and inspiring another person, they will not only reach further than they knew, but empower someone else in return.

Think back to your first job. When was the moment you caught a glimpse of your true potential and felt inspired to reach it? Still early in my career, a few distinct moments stand out and can be pinpointed to excellent leadership.

My first in-person client meeting, my first “ownable” project and account, my first professional business trip, my first mentee: My first supervisor and mentor was behind each of these, but it started by planting seeds of certitude and empowerment.

With each defining moment, I felt reassurance that I could do the task in front of me – and take initiative to create new best practices while I did. Behind each professional milestone, I had a supervisor who was personally invested in me—cheering me on, reinforcing the expectation that I could reach higher and challenge the standard.

The key is, this supervisor took personal interest in individuals, emboldening each to be independent and encouraging her teams to raise the bar. Being recognized for her mentorship best practices, she founded an agency mentorship program, where she’d connect with the junior colleagues. Her humility as a leader allowed her to listen and relate while she’d counsel the junior staff to manage-up, liberate their ideas and needs, and inspire proactivity on their accounts.

Her motto, “Don’t ask someone to do something you’re not willing to do yourself,” spread like wildfire across the practice. A team of people being the type of leaders they want to work with continues to contribute to the unique culture of the agency. Leading by example, she became a catalyst of change.

Today, we celebrate HBA’s “Rising Stars;” women who are changing health, society and lives. Cheers to Elaine Andrecovich, the supervisor and mentor who is not only communicating the value of life, but changing ours!

Suzanne Yergensen, Account Executive, Makovsky Health

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