What would you do if you didn’t work in healthcare?

I would still be an entrepreneur because that is who I am. One thing I’ve always wanted to do is to open a quesadilla shop next to every public high school, offering healthy quesadillas to any child that wants one. I make a great one — ham, cheese, avocado and tomato.  Or, I would set up a sanctuary for unwanted dogs — I feel an affinity toward them that transcends our own two rescue dogs.

Can you give a shout-out to someone who helped you at a pivotal time in your career?

It would have to be my partner, Dinah Nissen. We first met when I was starting Greater Than One in 2000, and she has been through the ups and downs. Not only does she offer unwavering support, but her wise counsel has been invaluable. She has tremendous insight and can understand complex problems. She’s one of the smartest people I know. 

How has the pandemic reset the rules on your work-life balance?

I would say that I have worked harder, longer hours through the pandemic, mostly because it’s something we never expected, and it came on so suddenly. It’s one of the most unique challenges that we’ve ever had to deal with from both a business and personal perspective and I’ve been trying to help guide the employees at Greater Than One and as well as our clients maneuver through it. In addition, our business shrunk somewhat, and so we’re trying to make that up. 

Share a moment when you left your comfort zone; what did you learn?

Part of my DNA, and I’ve always been that way, is I spend a good bit of my time outside of my comfort zone. Most of my most meaningful accomplishments in business have been accomplished by my pushing through challenges, rather than avoiding them. I just remember to persevere, do the right thing and trust that a combination of hard work and good instincts will pay off in the end.

What do you find frustrating about working in healthcare marketing?

Absolutely nothing. I love it. I look forward to going to work, and even during the pandemic I was in the office most days.

What are you doing to send the career ladder back down?

Part of my job is to remove obstacles for our employees, and we provide training and career development activities so that, whether they stay with us or go elsewhere, they’ll have marketable skills that are in demand. It’s all about creating the work environment to allow our staff, a group of very smart people, to achieve their potential. We try hard here.

What’s something your colleagues don’t know about you?

I’m an expressive person, I usually don’t hold things back. So, I believe the colleagues I’ve worked with for many years know me quite well. If you’ve worked with someone for 20 years or more you really get a chance to see them in a lot of different situations, there aren’t that many surprises. To the ones that are newer to Greater Than One, they likely don’t know about my career and my background and that’s why I try, even during this unique moment in time with so many people working remotely, to reach out to them.

What is one thing you would tell young women starting their careers in healthcare marketing?

This is a meaningful place to be and healthcare is a tremendous growth industry, with all the medical advances of recent years combined with a population with almost unlimited need for the products and services the healthcare industry produces.  Welcome! I believe strongly in the potential women have to succeed in business and I want to do what I can to help them get there. Greater Than One is not only LGBTQ certified, but we are a woman-owned company. Our leadership reflects this.

Recount an experience with the healthcare system, positive or negative, that inspires you.

This has to be meeting and working with Rebecca Trahan, a SCAD survivor and our first employee at Honeycomb Health. Even though she has been through the worst of times, she is happy and positive with a “can do” spirit.  This has happened a few times in my career in healthcare, meeting incredible people who, even though the deck has been stacked against them, still persevere with a positive attitude.  They are true role models and heroes.

Favorite TV show/movie/song/book?

The book that has had the most impact on me is Women Who Run With the Wolves.  First, it confirmed my sense that being loyal is always important, and second, it taught me to trust my instincts. I love watching American Idol — the stories of young people successfully pursuing their dreams from unlikely backgrounds is very inspiring and I love the singing!