Clinical Changemakers
Clinical Changemakers
Ep9: Power, Managers & the Science of Teams | Professor Sara Singer

Ep9: Power, Managers & the Science of Teams | Professor Sara Singer

"You have to be somewhat more strategic, you have to identify your sources of power and use those sources of power to influence the people you want to enact whatever it is you are asking of them"

— Professor Sara Singer, Director of the HELIO Labs at Stanford Medicine.

Listen on Apple, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts.

In this episode, Professor Sara Singer reflects on her early experiences of healthcare with her father being a surgeon and starting in strategy and policy. Professor Singer highlights that the best leaders and managers do a lot of really good listening and delegation and that there is an important distinction between the two concepts, even if they are being expressed by a single person. She goes on to explore the challenges that managers have in working with experts and the potential for parallel hierarchies within organizations. Professor Singer outlines how clinicians should reflect on their sources of power to better influence colleagues to enact the change they are seeking.  Next, she discusses the "Army Crew" case, as an example of when a team loses its identity and needs an intervention to improve the team culture and performance. Finally, Professor Singer packages up the well-studied literature on the science of teamwork as a framework for use in the healthcare setting.

Follow Professor Sara Singer: Twitter/X, LinkedIn

About our guest: Sara J. Singer, M.B.A., Ph.D., is a Professor of Medicine at the Stanford University School of Medicine and Professor of Organizational Behavior, by courtesy, at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. She is Associate Director of the Clinical Excellence Research Center in the Department of Medicine and Faculty Director of the Health Leadership, Innovation, and Organizations (HELIO) Labs in the Division of Primary Care and Population Health. She is affiliated faculty with the Stanford Department of Health Policy, Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, Clinical Excellence Research Center, Center for Innovation in Global Health, and Woods Institute for the Environment.

Additional resources mentioned in the podcast

Contact information: If you have any feedback, questions or if you'd like to get in touch, reach out at

Music attribution: AudioCoffee from Pixabay.

Clinical Changemakers
Clinical Changemakers
Clinicians have trained in the art and science of medicine, and yet feel powerless to make a meaningful impact on the healthcare system.
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