Critical Elements of Understanding and Interpreting Your Career Narrative To DaVita Leadership
You are going to be speaking with someone from the DaVita organization that will be making their best effort to get clear appreciation for a variety of things during the short window of a phone conversation or a Zoom meeting. So much of your own story deserves telling in a way that you are clearly understood and appreciated and they too have things that are important for you to hear and evaluate as you think through potential next steps in your own career progression. We hope to act as a thoughtful host and introduce some critical factors that will enhance the experience for you and the likelihood that you have additional opportunity to explore the opportunity further.
Essential Preparation for Building Your Best Impression
There are a few things that are always top of mind for leaders in many circles and most definitely the leadership within DaVita. Your ability to prepare effectively to access and energize your conversation with the following will be essential:
- How do you inspire teams to do hard things with a strong connection to their personal “why”. This is about establishing a perspective from listening to your team and then building an approach that recognizes their motivators and helps them rise above the personal biases for the collective good. Talking about this needs to be very personal and passionate at some degree. DaVita team leadership always stays close to the fire of the sense of mission collectively and individually. If you do not have clear examples of this and include this dimension of your leadership approach, you could leave the unfortunate impression that you lead well at certain strategic levels but cannot connect to the realities of a front line or effectively dial them into your planning.
- When you tackle strategic opportunity or challenge, how to you approach it and what is the order/priority of your action as a leader? Structured thought leads to deliberate and effective action. This is an area of organizational leadership that every great operational leader thinks about. When you join DaVita, they will be asking you to take on a variety of energizing puzzles and it doesn’t end in the map room of strategy. It happens every day on the front lines of engagement. Structure is key as you step into the ring to take on a challenge:
- Start with a hypothesis: Beginning with a thesis of what a problem looks like and where are the root causes that allow you and your team to build a problem-solving roadmap that will lead to asking the right questions and complete the right analysis. How have you done this specifically when approaching complex challenges in your past? What were very specific details that you considered and helped your team to consider?
- Figuring out what analysis you need to perform or questions you need to ask: How have you done this or how are you doing this currently when engaging a complex area where you and your team need to establish critical awareness to make sure-footed decisions?
- Critical brainstorming: Brainstorming with an individual leader or a team of leaders is essential to getting to the best outcome but just like you see in great consultants or operational leaders, it is a structured brainstorm. Coming into these sessions with an open mind and having done the homework and holding other team members involved to have done their homework is essential. How has that been a part of your reality recently and what were the results of solid brainstorms?
- Incorporating humility in owning the fact that the problem is not always the problem: When have you made mistakes or undershot potential value by making assumptions that you knew what the problem was versus keeping an open mind? Examples of this and memories of times that you have done this well as well as times that you have tripped you or your team up through incorrect assumptions will be key to exploring your leadership learning with DaVita.
- Breaking things down into smaller bite sized pieces and prioritizing them from greatest to least importance: Taking complex realities and breaking it into smaller defined bites is a key fundamental in the leadership toolkit. How have you done this as consistent part of your own leadership style and what are particular examples of doing that with a “big hairy problem” that you tackled with a team.
- Executive presence. What are ways that you establish confidence with peers, authorities and outside clients so that you are able to inspire change? The idea that people will change or mobilize their perspective without your persuasive momentum is unlikely so how do you develop empathy with the interviewing leader from DaVita, explore elements of their situation/need, establish a humble but solid sense of your personal credibility and then build a picture for why you would likely want to help them reach the opportunities and solve the problems that are in their midst every day. It is more than “why DaVita and why now”. It includes that perhaps but it really gets to your personal curiosity and attraction to taking on difficult things so that you can strengthen your personal capacity as a team member and leader.
- Translation velocity: How quickly can you move from 30,000 foot strategic view to base camp of a particular tactical reality. Grit is key here. There is always a barometer that is used based on situations, timing, critical factors in play but the DaVita team has been exceptionally successful by building a team of highly translational leaders who can move quickly from strategy to tactics and back again and relish that in clear ways that inspires their teams. How do you work in ways that incorporates this velocity and decisive approach? Where have you had to pick up the ball for others to insure that stuff gets done and then helped them see how to do it in the future? Where have you kept your hands in the clay but also kept a view on the horizon of the larger picture?
These ingredients are essential. No conversation will reach it’s potential if all of them are not combined in the mix. There is an adage that goes “if you want someone to think you are funny, tell them a joke, don’t tell them you are funny”. That will be very true in your dialogue during this interview so incorporate real life experiences as you walk through the above but also use it to organize and tackle the interview itself. How much can you demonstrate preparation by doing research ahead of time about current realities in the kidney care market or specific elements highlighted in a DaVita quarterly report? The goal for us is to make sure you get a robust session that elevates your knowledge and awareness and translates your experience and ethos in a way that maximum clarity is achieved.