Every year, Modern Healthcare selects 25 rising stars in the healthcare industry as part of its Emerging Leaders program, with each honoree profiled in an issue of the magazine and online. We spoke to Steven Chew, vice president of service lines at Tampa General Hospital, about how his position has evolved and what his team is doing to deliver care in a city where its population continues to grow.
When did you first start considering a career in healthcare?
As I reflect on this, I think about the long history of nurses and other healthcare professionals in my family. Caregiving and providing support to others has always been a part of my fabric. Early on, I studied biology and organic chemistry in undergrad but naturally fell into pursuing healthcare. I wanted to get closer to patients and direct care delivery.
You’ve been with Tampa General Hospital for more than 14 years. How have your responsibilities evolved?
It’s been an incredibly rewarding time. I’ve been able to grow my responsibilities by cultivating meaningful, respectful relationships at all levels of the organization. It’s an honor to know I am making a difference, while personally owning the outcomes of the teams and initiatives I lead. I’ve had the opportunity to lead teams as large as 600 members. My career path exemplifies Tampa General’s dedication to supporting its internal team members and providing mapping and development opportunities throughout everyone’s career, whether they’re on the clinical or nonclinical side.
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How have operational issues related to the Tampa market changed in recent years?
Tampa is an extremely competitive market and has been rapidly growing over the past five years, with continued growth projected over the next decade. The population growth in Tampa was also accelerated by the pandemic, as working remotely became more common for many industries. Tampa General is one of the largest academic medical centers in Florida, so keeping up with the continuum of care, including primary care, ancillary services and subspecialties, is crucial to remain at our top position in the market. Our individual service line strategic plans focus on demand-matching this population growth with the tertiary and quaternary, complex care we provide.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I work on supporting the individual and tailor my style based on each team member and leader. I strive to provide enough exposure and leeway to allow each leader to flourish and be authentic. It is important to me to ensure they figure out what approach and style works best for them. What has worked for me in the past and my development is one of a million ways to make it work; I’ve learned there’s no formula or secret playbook for leadership. My goal is to allow each of my leaders to find what works for them and their team, with coaching and support along their journey, in order to be influential leaders themselves.