Ian Maynard – Former Director General Queensland Health

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Intro 0:03
Many aspire to reach the upper echelon of the healthcare industry. But few are able to successfully navigate the corporate ladder. In this fortnightly series, C suite partner sits down with international healthcare executives asking the tough questions and unpacking the personalities of the top industry leaders.

Welcome to the boardroom.

Michael Murray 0:34 
Ian thank you for joining C-Suite Partners in the boardroom.

Ian Maynard 0:37 
You’re welcome, Mike. 

Michael Murray 0:39
What do you see healthcare in the next 10 years? 

Ian Maynard 0:42
I think we’re about to enter a season of incredible excitement in healthcare worldwide. we’re on the cusp of breaking a whole range of genetic conditions and chronic health conditions with genomics and other developments. We’ll be faced with a whole lot of ethical decisions, but also a whole lot of opportunities to get a better, healthier and longer life. 

Michael Murray 1:07
And what about 10 years previous, what would you give yourself any advice that your career?

Ian Maynard 1:11
looking forward, if I if I go back 10 years, The advice I’d give myself is to really put boundaries in place. One, one thing I learned from my time in, in the healthcare sector, is how it can consume every minute of every day because what you’re doing is making a difference in people’s lives. It’s improving quality of life for the community. And you get an incredible sense of satisfaction and personal achievement in working in those areas. And as a result, it’s easy to slowly erode other areas of your life. Because the role of a senior executive, certainly the public health system can consume 24 hours a day,

Michael Murray 1:52
Talk me through how you deal with crisis.

Ian Maynard 1:55
I’ve dealt with a lot of crises in in my career, the one that really has the most significant impact on me was back in my late 20s. And I’d had a series of rapid promotions, I was essentially over promoted into a role where I didn’t have the skills or experience to really do it effectively. And over the first 12 months, I saw a decline in market share decline in profitability. We started losing customers, eventually, we started losing staff from the company that I was hitting up. So as things started to get difficult, challenging, I retreated to within myself, I turned to consultants to solve problems, I moved away from my executive team. And the problems just got worse and came to a head when I got called in by the chief executive. And he told me, Ian, was that you got lots of potentials, but you’re about a month away from being fired. And I needed a message that candidate to really get me to realize that I had a problem that I wasn’t dealing with. And what he then did was work with me over the next couple of months, he helped me to understand the impact of what I was doing and the strategies that I was applying on on my team. As I try things I get feedback. And eventually, over the course of that two months, worked out what to do, and turned the organization around and then then moved on. So what was the skillset that you needed to uplift to get back into those types of positions? The core skill set was really trusting and listening to my team and listening to actually hear what was being said, rather than listening to respond with an answer. You know, I thought I was expected to have all the answers. And so when questions were asked of me, I solve problems. I didn’t actually inquire I didn’t seek to clarify, I really sought to understand if I had done that, I’d have realized that I couldn’t solve those problems at that realization sort of came at that time. And it took me a long time to rebuild that into my leadership style. And make sure that as I build a team of direct reports that I’ve got capabilities with the team that compensate for is we’re all not so strong.

Michael Murray 4:11
What about regrets? Do you have any over the past 20 years that your own commercial career?

Ian Maynard 4:17
I regret a couple of things are written not moving into the public sector earlier. Okay, I graduated as a an organic chemist, I moved into research and development. I spent the first 20 years of my working life with large multinational corporates, but I always had a passion and a heart to serve. And so I always felt this pull back into the public sector. And I made a significant transition back in 2005 lift, very successful, very senior corporate role and moved into a local government role. And I have just thoroughly enjoyed the time since then that deep satisfaction that comes from being able to Make a difference in people’s lives.

Michael 5:02:
And how do you want your career legacy to be remembered?

Ian Maynard 5:06
Look, I’d love to be remembered as someone who actually made a difference that Queenslanders didn’t die prematurely because they were waiting longer than they should have been on wait lists that they didn’t get turned away from emergency departments because every bed was being occupied, that they’re able to get life saving cataract surgery or or dental procedures that made a real difference in their life and the quality of their life.

Michael 5:36 
Ian, thank you for spending time with C-Suite Partners in the boardroom.

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