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7 Questions on Leadership with Michael Pomerance

Name: Michael Pomerance

Title: Vice President and Regional Managing Director

Organisation: Oracle Health

Mike Pomerance has been involved with hospital information system automation since 1995 and is currently Vice President and Regional Managing Director for Oracle Health covering N. Europe and LATAM. His digitisation experience ranges from single facility projects up to full scale, country and regional-wide digitisation programs in Qatar, UAE, and Sweden. At Oracle Health he has held various positions from sales, support, client advocacy, and organisational management which provides a well rounded perspective to help his clients and associates understand how all of the pieces need to fit together in any digitisation project. Mike’s primary focus for the last 10 years has been to help Cerner, now Oracle Health, open new markets for growth and his focus on client and associate engagement has helped these markets to expand. Mike is a graduate of Emory University and has a Bachelor degree in accounting as well is a Six Sigma Black Belt. He routinely speaks at conferences worldwide on topics of operational efficiencies, healthcare technology and associate engagement.

Thank you to the 2,000 leaders who’ve generously done the 7 Questions on Leadership!

I hope Michael's answers will encourage you in your leadership journey. Enjoy!


Jonno White

1. What have you found most challenging as a leader?

Keeping in close contacts with the people who actually do the work, the higher up you move in an organization. It takes effort, it is possible, but it isn't easy.

2. How did you become a leader? Can you please briefly tell the story?

When I was 12 years old, I was a Boy Scout. I was a low level Tenderfoot but when I joined my new troop after moving to a new city, it became clear that the current "leaders" were unable or unwilling to help the troop to improve. At our next camp out, I was able to get the team working better together and working to improve as a team. It was at that moment that I realised that a leader does not always have to have the highest rank, have the most seniority, or have a title that stipulates leadership, but rather it comes to people who want to lead others and whom others willingly follow. This was a great life lesson and one that I refer to often in my coaching/mentoring.

3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?

I wake up everyday at 7:30am and spend 1 hour preparing for my day. This includes getting dressed, looking at my to-dos scheduled for the day, taking my blood pressure, playing Wordle with my wife and mother, as well checking my socials. After that, I work until 12noon and then I eat lunch with my wife and take the hour to engage with her, plan our next weekend away, etc. I spend the rest of the day at work and usually finish around 19:30 - 20:00 each day. I eat dinner with my wife and then we watch mindless TV for 90 minutes as that is my wife's favourite pastime. On weekends, I focus on left over to-dos, reading I have queued up, and taking a hike in different forests near our home for 60-90 minutes when I get the chance.

4. What's a recent leadership lesson you've learned for the first time or been reminded of?

If you don't save time for your personal growth and your future organisational plans, your days will get eaten up by things that are much less important. You must save and protect that time.

5. What's one book that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?

The subtle are of not giving a f*ck. It reminded me to realise that there is a reason we have prioritisation and why we can't focus on everything everyday. If you care 100% about everything, then you basically are caring less about many things and most likely your progress on these "same priority" issues will prevent you from focusing and getting things done as fast as you need to. You can also tie this concept to Lencioni books, where he says you can't have more than 1 "top priority" at a time. Only one thing can be top priority and if you don't work on the top priority, then you are not focused on the right thing.

6. If you could only give one piece of advice to a young leader, what would you say to them?

Be a Pirate Captain. A pirate captain is a leader who the pirates choose to lead them. They pick the person that they trust and the person they will follow. If your people would not vote you in as the leader of the team, then you have work to do to figure out why because if you don't figure it out, you probably won't have people willingly following you, especially if times are tough.

7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a leader, so far?

You are only as capable as the people you have working for you, especially the front line. As a leader you cannot provide real long term value by yourself, you need others in the boat with you. If you are not spending 15-20% of your time mentoring your top performers and talking to your front line you are missing a huge opportunity to be seen as a leader that others want and love to follow.

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