Leadership Series: Interview with Dave Dexter, President & CEO, Sonora Quest Laboratories

Tuesday, July 26, 2016   |   Category: Media Coverage

Source: SlonePartners.com

“One of the best attributes that a leader can develop is the ability to choose the right person for the right job at the right time,” says Dave Dexter, CEO of Sonora Quest Laboratories.

With 16 years as the leader of a company with over 3,200 employees, Dave Dexter’s advice on leadership and building a high performance team is some of the best in the business. In this exclusive Slone Partners interview, he discusses the importance of work-life balance, how to communicate your company culture at all levels, and why perspective is the key to making decisions in a constantly changing healthcare space.

There are over 3,200 employees at Sonora Quest Laboratories and Laboratory Sciences of Arizona. With a company that large, how do you motivate and lead at every level?

Dave Dexter: It’s all about values, focus, and alignment. It starts every August with the off site development of the strategic plan by our Senior Leadership Team, which culminates in a draft business plan, The RoadMap. This plan goes to our Leadership Team (which are the 250 leaders across our integrated laboratory network) for their review and input. It comes back to the SLT for review/approval, before it is provided to our board of directors for review/approval. The business plan must state what we’re going to do, and how we’re going to measure outcomes, because you can’t manage what you can’t measure.

The SLT then presents The RoadMap to our Leadership Team off site to prepare them to present the business plan to their employees. Every employee receives the business plan as part of our waterfall communications. We also have a Share the Vision team of high performing employees that develop 5-6 objectives that align directly with The RoadMap and provide financial incentives for achievement of objectives. The Share the Vision team presents their incentive plan directly to the board of directors for review/approval.

At this point, we now have clear deliverables, focus, and metrics in place to align the entire organization from the board to senior leadership team to leadership team to employees; in effect, everyone is rowing on an oar to drive the success of the company. This is how you drive a values based high performance culture.

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