Recently, Renee Broadbent pulled back the curtain and answered some questions about her career path. Broadbent is VP of IT at SOHO Health, a collaboration between physicians and the hospital partners of Trinity Health of New England.
How do you work to maintain a healthy work/life balance?
COVID has certainly presented some challenges in this area. For the most part, home and work are now the same, with people having to be remote for long periods. And it looks like in one form or another, organizations will retain this model. It’s important to figure out how to balance all of that, because it’s very easy to merge the two and find yourself working all the time. Some things people can do are as follows:
- Have a designated space to work that isn’t part of the house you use for other things; for example, the family room if you can. This makes it a place you have to ‘go to’.
- CIO jobs don’t necessarily stop and start, especially in healthcare, but it’s important to keep boundaries in place. For example, I am firm about not responding to texts or emails after 6 p.m., unless it’s an emergency.
- I carve out time on the weekends to detach from my phone, PC or other devices and do something else. Getting away from technology is important.
- Keep physically active: run, bike, yoga, walk, anything to keep moving.
- Remember, work is work, it does not define you.
What is the best book book you’ve read recently?
The best book I’ve read is The Lure of a Toxic Leader. This may seem strange, but I’m very focused on leadership, being a good leader, teaching about leadership at a university so we develop good leaders for the future. I think as part of this learning process, it’s important to understand there are toxic leaders out there and they are often very charismatic and are able to get people to do amazing things. As leaders and followers, it’s important to recognize them and not enable their position of influence.
What has been your proudest moment as a leader?
This one is hard, because there have been many. I feel fortunate to have built and led great teams, and I cherish them all for various reasons. But as a leader, the most proud moment and accomplishment for me is when a person who works for me says, ‘I’m leaving because I have an awesome opportunity. Thank you for helping me get there.’ While I hate to lose a great person, it is my greatest thanks when I’ve lead and mentored them well, and now they can go on to the next phase of their career and dream.
Looking back on your career, is there something you would change?
I thought about this question a long time. I looked back and wondered if there was anything I would do differently. Certainly there have been hiccups, unexpected job loss, and wrong choices, but I think that even then, I was able to learn and grow from the experiences. I believe we should all look at things that way; the good and bad. And so I would not change a thing.