Executive Women Interview with Dr Maliha Hashmi
- What inspired you to embark on your journey in Healthcare?
My passion & drive has been, is and continues to be to positively impact and improve lives and to play a big role/part in helping people to live happier, healthier, self-empowered, fuller lives with a tool that not only helps people but unites them too and that is what healthcare is all about this drive continues to speed the engine of passion within me and continues to inspire me to wanting to do more and more toward this goal. As a healthcare executive, I think it’s very important to create a healthcare-related diplomacy where the world can be united by helping each other through healthcare as well.
Also, I believe, Healthcare brings together all aspects, all fields (tech, legal, pharm, engineering, etc) and all stake holders together for a worthy cause – to help improve the quality of life. In my eyes, Healthcare is also universal and has no borders or boundaries across age religion ethnicity, it in essence can be the common denominator that unites the world together.
- What do you believe are the main skills/traits one must possess to thrive in their professional life? And in the field of Healthcare in particular?
In general, I think it’s important to have the expertise, perseverance, agility, networking and patience. Being a visionary for healthcare in particular is very important –to think big, really big. You have to be a dreamer and a doer to make that moon shot happen.
- In your opinion, what structural, social, and economical advantages can women inclusion bring to the table in the world of healthcare?
Healthcare, fortunately, is amongst the first to have accepted women in the workplace very quickly and very early on (as nurses and doctors). So, it stands at a unique position to continue to be a leader in including women – by now implementing more inclusive policies for work-life balance, maternal leave, etc. – at the policy level.
Equity in pay for the economic level and by having more women leaders in healthcare – the structural level is one of equity and inclusion. With the advent of the fourth industrial revolution and digitalization occurring in health systems, it’s important that technology also is produced in ways that women are not inadvertently left behind. Mixed teams –with women and men are needed to sit together to create technological advances that prevent any gender bias from occurring in systems and technology.
- What is the leadership style that you developed through merging all of your experiences?
There are many different styles of leadership and each brings its own value for the work place ecosystem, personally, I have adapted two leadership styles that have blended together:
Empathetic Leadership and Transformational Leadership: where as an Empathetic Leaders, it’s essential to look out for the wellbeing of those around us while not missing a beat in moving forward but with a good work culture. This along-side, transformational leadership that can inspire teams to think in new ways which is essential in an era of every changing “the future of work”, business processes to improve productivity and profitability.
Personally, I think the best way to utilize this blended style of leadership is to look for ways to better shape and impact the future not just the present.
- Why is this leadership style is good for the team:
The blend of the two of Empathetic & Transformational Leadership has become an essential post pandemic era when a majority of people in the workplace experienced burn outs and started quite quitting. This blend of two leadership styles inspires employees to grow and think big and do big. This is a highly encouraging form of blended leadership where employees are supported and encouraged to see what they’re capable of.
When starting a job with this type of leader, all employees might get a list of goals to reach and deadlines for reaching them. The goals might begin quite simple, but as employees grow and meet their goals, leaders will give them more agility to grow further and take on more challenges to conquer as they grow with the company and at the same time think of newer examples and ideas which will be accepted and acted upon.
- What are your thoughts on Women Inclusion?
With the ever-evolving new technologies, the world needs to work ten times harder now more than ever to bring equity and inclusion on the table in a sustainable manner. According to IMF, with the advent of automation, 26 million women’s jobs in 30 countries will be at high risk for displacement from technology within the next 20 years which means there is a greater need for women to break the glass ceiling and be involved in the forefront of this technological 4th industrial revolution.
- You were selected and recognized as one of the Top Seven Most Talented Emerging Female Health Leaders of the MENA region and also are the recipient the Forbes Health Leadership Award. You were also listed as one of the top 20 women in the Nation in the United States of America for your achievements making it into the Who’s Who in America List. What was the added value that these listings/awards brought upon you on both personal and professional levels?
I am humbled and honored to have been selected for the various awards for my achievements and accomplishments. With every achievement and award, the responsibility increases on my shoulders, and the responsibility imposes on me to move forward and develop others… It encourages me to showcase even more passion in my work so that it inspires the youth to follow my example. When someone follows suit, we can make an impact on the lives of others in a positive and beautiful way. My achievements serve as a reminder to myself to continue to improve my performance and to continue to do more because we live as caliphs on this earth and we must do good and we must see better achieved around us so that the multiplier effect continues’
- What’s your message to those reading this?
I see myself as a spiritual soul; observant, inquisitive, reflective And wish to give to those around me and to spread goodness and value which may benefit humanity as a whole because Doing good feeds more good, so all those reading this: Be kind, be genuine, keep dreaming big and keep adding value to whatever comes your way, as we are khalifas on this earth and our mission should be to improve our relationships, our environment, our own lives, so we can keep giving back what we have been given. That is a gift, whatever we do, we should do it with excellence and make a positive impact to improve other’s lives an in the process living a life of meaning and service.
- What’s next for Dr. Maliha Hashmi?
Professionally: Making more positive global impact, more growth, more achievements inshallah, more efforts to create the world’s best and most inclusive health-caring systems around the world, all the while motivating those around me and lifting up others and setting an example for the next generation of female leaders inshallah. My career path has taken me to different places where I can continue to develop and grow, we are all students for life and this makes me realize that there is more to be achieved in the future and this is what takes me to the next level.
Personally: What I want next in my life is…. love… inshallah…I think I’ve given a lot of love to people and I’m ready to receive a little love now and start living a deeper personal side of my life. I’m finally ready to settle down and I’m still single, by the way, but I’m finally ready to settle down and that’s something I’m looking forward to a lot, and I think it’s a very important part of everyone’s life to find the perfect balance between professional and personal life. When you ask me, “What are your future projects?” my answer is love. I’m looking forward to receiving love from the right person inshallah and having given love to so many people around the world and continuing to do it professionally, on a personal level, I would like to live this aspect of my personal life, and I think I’m finally ready for it.