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The 2023 Year in Review: Millennial Leadership, Battles for Talent, and Investing in Perioperative Education

December 11, 2023


The 2023 Year in Review: Millennial Leadership, Battles for Talent, and Investing in Perioperative Education

As 2023 ends, we want to take the time to highlight some of our most popular stories and to thank you for reading. As perioperative healthcare leaders and executives, we know that time is often at a premium for you. We work hard to ensure that the content we publish is of the highest use to you professionally. So, if by chance you missed a few issues, here is your opportunity to play catch up.

Best wishes for a wonderful holiday season!

Hospital Negative Margins: How Essential Will Business Expertise Become for the Director of Surgical Services? 

Hospitals were still feeling the heat from the COVID pandemic at the beginning of 2023, both emotionally and financially. Costs for full-time staff, contract labor, medications, staff, and supplies were (and still are) through the roof. In this piece, some of our 40 Fast and Future Leaders of 2022 discussed how much business proficiency will be a requirement – plainly stated or not – for Directors of Surgical Services as facilities try to increase profits.

Black Women in Periop Leadership: A Lot of Magic in One Place

The path of advancement to healthcare executive leadership is not always straightforward for women and minorities. Perioperative leaders Dr. Katie Boston-Leary, Keeli Stith, and Dr. Enda Gilliam sat for a roundtable discussion about climbing the leadership ladder, the importance of mentoring, and how the C-suite can ensure those with leadership potential get their shot.

Whitman Partners AORN Session: Diversity, Organization Purpose, and Personal Branding  

Whitman Partners CEO Josiah Whitman moderated a panel, “Millennial Leadership in the OR: The Collaborative Workstyle,” at the 2023 AORN Global Surgical Conference and Expo. Panelists Jessica Johnson, Bevan Burnell, and Dillon Hofeling shared staff retention tips, ways to create an environment where teamwork thrives, and why the collaborative leadership style is the way to go.

The “Whitman Style” of Recruitment: How to Build Relationships that Last 

Long-time client partner Jim Carver and portfolio manager Emily Culp break down what recruiting perioperative leaders is like using the “Whitman style.” We rely on the goodwill we have created with our clients and candidates to make placements that will be a “love match.”

How Investing in Periop Education Can Save Hospitals Money 

Perioperative education is often an untapped source of cost savings. Inadequately trained staff has just as much of a negative impact as a staff shortage. Directors of Surgical Services Nikki Washington and Theresa Cowger, both OR educators, discuss the importance of a solid perioperative education and the financial consequences when it’s neglected.

The Battle for Talent: How Nemours Children’s Hospital Solved Perioperative Staffing Woes  

Vaccine mandates, competition with nurse travelers, and mass retirements made it difficult for hospitals to attract and retain full-time staff. Dr. Edna Gilliam, Assistant VP of Perioperative Services and SPD at Nemours, Delaware, breaks down how they turned a 30% RN staffing vacancy rate to 2.8% in just under a year.

Remember, Whitman Partners is a phone call or email away for your leadership staffing needs. For interim leadership, contact Zach Parker or Ines Radic; for permanent leadership, contact John Elffers. For general assistance, contact us at

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