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The NSPA Blog

Advocacy is Leadership

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Posted on September 2nd, 2019 by Bettina Carlson, under Leadership, Patient Advocacy, Something New, Take Charge

Last month, Teri and Bettina had the great fortune to attend one day of the two days of The Global Leadership Summit at the Willow Creek Community Church in South Barrington, Il. What a fabulous and inspiring day!! The presentations were … they were … well, they all were fabulous and inspiring; and while all had the theme of leadership at its core, each presentation had its own unique spin to it  – some had us in tears with laughter over their raw truth of our imperfections, and/or because of the way they were presented; others left us speechless with awe at the great courage that people have shown when overcoming obstacles. And they all left us impressed, empowered and inspired to go out in the world and be the best leaders we can be. 

The Global Leadership Summit 2019

Tom De Vries (President and CEO, Global Leadership Network) describes the goal of the Summit in his Welcoming Letter in the Summit Notebook: 

“You have influence – and it impacts everything and everyone around you. Wherever your influence is invested – your business, your church, your home, your school – it has the power to change life.

Influence is at the core of leadership. We’re living in a fractured world, but there is hope because men and women just like you are hungry to transform lives and unite their communities.

Developing your effectiveness in leadership is a process – one that takes a commitment to pursuing growth and strengthening skills that can maximize your contribution and impact. It is our privilege to serve you by providing access to resources that can increase your leadership influence while offering inspiration and equipping – and keep stoking the fire God is igniting in you.”

Wow! Does this sound familiar to you or not?! Yes indeed, it sounds like advocacy! It sounds like what we at NShore Patient Advocates embrace and pursue at our core! No wonder Teri and Bettina were glued to every word and message. It felt as though, the presenters were talking to us, with 7000 others listening in!

The Presentations

What were those presentations that impressed and inspired us so deeply? Following, we will share the key take aways. Take them to heart, and may they empower and inspire you like they empowered and inspired us. We are all leaders in some ways, why not be enlightened ones?

Craig Groeschel – Who You are

Co-Founder & Senior Pastor, Life Church

If one is humble, hungry, teachable and opens their eyes, mind and heart, when faced with uncomfortable truth and situations, they have a great chance to overcome their obstacles and progress to success and excellence. The pursuit of perfection on the other hand, is often the enemy of progress.

By acknowledging and embracing who YOU are, all your strengths, weaknesses and limitations; with no excuses, not retreat, no turning back and no sell out; you can learn what you are all about and what you are called to do. And once you have figured out the Who, you can figure out the Why, and eventually you can find the How. Then you can authentically step into what you are called to do, and step into your authority!   

Bozoma Saint John – Culture

Chief Marketing Officer, Endeavor

To change any culture (business, society health care, etc) is at its core up to the individuals. Despair not! One of our strength is to identify our weakness, and then own it unapologetically!  When you do this, you’ll become your authentic self. As authentic selves, we can honestly and respectfully meet each other in our differences and work together towards a common goal and change culture. 

Bozoma Saint John uses the metaphor of a “dance party” to show the difference between diversity and inclusion in our current culture, and it applies to many categories. A black woman herself, she has first hand knowledge of this discrepancy and describes: While “Diversity” invites you to the party, only “Inclusion” invites you to dance. So let’s show up unapologetically as who we are, accept it in the others, too,  and “dance together”.

Liz Bohannon – Purpose, Passion, Impact

Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Sseko Designs

Liz Bohannon believes that business is not about the bottom line but about people and making a difference. That by actively building a life of purpose, passion and impact, a business can be a powerful platform for social change.

And know: There is no need to be someone’s hero, nobody wants you or needs you to be their hero. We were created to live in community. And community is a “sacred dance” of needing and being needed, and of giving and being given. If you know, who you are, you will be a great successful “dancer”.

How do we get there? It starts with dreaming small – find out who you are (unapologetically) and you will find out what your values are, and then you will find your passions.  Then actively and purposely build your business and life on your authentic passion. This will serve your and others well and elevate your community.

Ben Sherwood – Believe in Magic

Former Co-Chairman, Disney Media Networks; Former President, Disney ABC Television; Best-Selling Author

The pace of change in our world is so rapid today. That speed and the amount of change is daunting to all, including our leaders. How do you lead in such change? 

Ben Sherwood claims, it is the leader’s power to connect with people that unlocks performance, actions, skills, etc. Leaders need to be curious, and “believe in magic”. They make the magic happen, by knowing who their people are, by engaging with their people, having open discourse at all times, good or bad. This way, a good leader is more likely to keep a point of reference of where people are and where business is headed, and thus is able to keep all on course through any changes.

Jason Dorsey – Generational Trends

#1 Rated Gen Z & Millennial Speaker; Researcher

Jason Dorsey uses original data driven research to explain generational behaviors. He identified two trends that greatly shape generations. One, as we all know, is “Parenting”. It goes without saying that parenting influences everything. 

The second is “Technology”. This trend is different for every generation, as every generation has not only new technology accessible to them in this fast paced area of innovations, but also the way we learn to use technology changes from generation to generation. 

Thus, technology is only “new” to those, who remember how it was before. Once we can understand and embrace this crucial difference, we have a better chance at connecting with and learning from each other in our different generations. 

Danielle Strickland – Is it true?

Pastor; Author; Justice Advocate

Change is always happening, just so much faster now. How can we become leaders in such times and changes? 

First of all, understand and embrace the fact, that disruption to a status quo is not a threat, but rather see it as an innovation to get to a new normal.  As we all have experienced, there is no changing the future without disturbing the present. 

 To successfully do this, you need to have a deep belief in yourself, know your values, and very important – continually ask yourself if “it is true” (your belief); then let your actions reflect those authentic values. In this way, your authentic self can become a confident leader that values connections over control! And provide stability and trust in a transformational time. 

DeVon Franklin – Embrace your difference

Producer, Author, Speaker; CEO of Franklin Entertainment

We are all different from one another. Some of us may stand out a bit more. Sometimes it can be hard and painful to stand out. So turn it around, look at your difference as your destiny, and own it. 

How do you do that? 

  1. Admit that you are different. 
  2. Don’t confuse someone else’s distinctiveness with your own. 
  3. Surround yourself with those, who encourage your difference. 
  4. Be “salt and light”. Salt is you preserving/embracing your difference, and you can shake it/your distinct creativity onto others; Light is your distinct creativity shining in the dark. 

When you own your difference, and commit to this process, you will arrive at your destiny, and YOUR difference will make a difference to the benefit of all.  

Patrick Lencioni – Servant leadership

Best-Selling Author; Founder & CEO, The Table Group

Good teamwork, clarity on goals and expectations, and employee engagement result in positive outcomes for businesses, including their employees. 

Patrick Lencioni observed that the more common model of “rewards-centered” leadership is based on largely status, power and rewards, to which the above all too often takes a back seat. A leader tells his people what he expects them to do, but doesn’t regularly inquire for needed feedback to stay on top of where everybody and everything is, only looking for the results, by which he judges his employees.  The employee’s well being gets lost in this model, and all too often employees burn out and have little motivation; and business can suffer, too. 

But there is another model of leadership, that focuses on guiding and connecting with the employees. Here the leader is regarding his leadership not as a privilege but as a “sacrificial gift”. He regards himself as a servant to his employees: he actively engages with them, listens to their concerns and ideas, doesn’t shy away from uncomfortable discussions, gives frequent feedback, has an open door policy. Under such leadership, employees feel motivated and assume ownership in their business success.


We hope you enjoyed the above information and find it useful and inspiring to your leadership. Yes, YOUR leadership! Because at the most fundamental level, we are all leaders! We all have the opportunity daily to lead and advocate, in words or through action, for the changes we want to see.

Further Information



On another note we at NShore Patient Advocates would like to share some of our latest news with you… The Patient Advocacy Symposium is back but bigger, better, and brighter than ever before! It has evolved into the International Conference on Patient Advocacy (ICOPA), and will be held right here in Northfield, IL on October 3rd-5th, 2019! We hope you will join us! Please see below for a link with more information: Home ICOPA 2019

For a no-cost 30 minute initial consultation, please call 847-612-6684 or click here to fill out our online callback request form.