Sam Siebu (MBA ’09) knows what he’s talking about when it comes to working in healthcare. As the vice president of talent acquisition at Community Health Network, a nonprofit healthcare system with more than 200 sites throughout central Indiana, Siebu oversees a team of 30-plus staff and directs human resources and recruiting activities for a network of about 13,000 employees. He hires clinical and nonclinical staff, and has deep insight on the industry and how professionals can stand apart.
What are some of the largest changes to the healthcare industry?
Everything is centered on technology and how we can leverage it to be more efficient and to provide better service. There is a huge focus on patient outcomes and our patients—our customers—are very savvy. Areas like preventive medicine and electronic health records are fast growing fields and healthcare employees are almost required to be technologically savvy.
So what makes a person an attractive hire?
Healthcare organizations are looking for people who have compassion, integrity and stewardship, and those who constantly strive for excellence. Of course, we need people who have the technical skills and education, but the one key ingredient—the difference we tend to look for—is passion. The healthcare profession is very stressful and employees have to deal with difficult situations, so we want to hire people who have the heart for the job.
Assuming a job seeker has this passion, what’s the best way to find a new opportunity?
Stay relevant. Pursue certifications in your field and join networking organizations such as the American College of Healthcare Executives or the National Association of Health Services Executives. Subscribe to related journals, such as the American Journal of Public Health, so that you’re abreast of best practices. Perhaps the best way to demonstrate your passion is to volunteer at a hospital, or wherever you want to eventually work. I know people who volunteered in hospitals and, within months, were asked to join the teams.
How do you stay motivated?
If you’re ever having a hard day, walk through your hospital or clinic and see what patients are going through. You’ll have an appreciation for what we do. You cannot lose sight of why you want to work in healthcare—it’s important to remain committed to the work.