AAWR Early Career Professional Leadership Award.
Dr Rama Ayyala
Columbia University Medical Center
Lucy B. Spalluto, MD
Co-Director, Women in Radiology
Associate Director, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
Department of Radiology and Radiological Sciences
I am extremely appreciative of the opportunity provided to me by the American Association for Women in Radiology to attend the 2016 Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Early Career Women Faculty Professional Development Seminar. I must admit, I was initially uncertain of what to expect from such an intense faculty development program and I was slightly apprehensive as meeting orientation approached!
However, upon arrival at the Inverness Hotel, I was immediately put at ease by the welcoming atmosphere of this unique seminar. The AAMC has truly designed this program to accommodate the career development needs of each women attendee as an individual and offers an unparalleled experience for women faculty to gain executive skills necessary for success in academic medicine.
Each dynamic speaker thoroughly covered an important topic such as Time Management and Organization, Communication as a Leader, Understanding Medical School Finances, and Difficult Conversations. Small group sessions offered opportunities to work closely with the AAMC faculty members. Importantly, the seminar encouraged and provided ample time for something we are often lack in academic medicine: self-reflection. This included understanding of personality type and how to use your personality type as a strength, strategizing your ideal career path, and gaining insight into how you are seen by others.
I am confident that I will not only integrate the skills I acquired at the AAMC Early Career Women Faculty Professional Development Seminar into my professional practice, but that I will also share these skills with my female colleagues and our trainees. I highly recommend this seminar to other women in academic medicine, and also strongly recommend that institutions offer support to female faculty interested in attending.
: AAMC Early Career Award Winner
I am honored to have had the opportunity to represent the American Association for Women's Radiologists at the Early Career Women Faculty Development Seminar hosted by the American Association of Medical Colleges in Inverness, CO this past July. I was excited to be part of this group of motivated and talented young women who had all come together to support the professional development of women in academia.
The weekend began with a name card at a table full of strangers. We introduced ourselves and learned that we shared the common pursuit of being academic radiologists, all of us from different regions of the US. Although there were only seven radiologists in total, we were all excited to share our individual experiences. Before the end of the day, we had discussed work-related issues such as the promotion track at our respective institutions or different approaches to teaching trainees as well as personal topics such as what our spouses do (medicine or not) and how we balance being mothers and academic radiologists.
The days were filled with various lectures ranging from Working Through Differences: Personality Types at Work, Striving and Thriving in Tough Times: Career Strategies for Women in Academic Medicine, Transforming Difficult Conversations into Opportunities for Positive Change, and Fundamentals of Leadership. On two afternoons, I attended smaller breakout sessions including Turning Your Clinical, Administrative, and Educational Activities into Scholarship – for Clinician-Educators and Succeeding at Change Management: Bringing New Programs from Theory to Reality.
In addition to learning practical workplace skills, the conference focused on self-reflection and determining how our personalities shape our professional goals and workplace dynamic. To provide additional insights, we took the Myers-Briggs personality test, a fascinating introspective questionnaire which indicates psychological preferences in how people perceive the world and make decisions. The premise is that we all have specific preferences in the way we understand our experiences, and these preferences underlie our interests, needs, values, and motivation. Although one is able to learn their best cognitive learning style through the test, we learned how to empathize and understand others who were not in our same results group. These self-reflection exercises provided a framework to be more understanding as co-workers, educators, and, most importantly, physicians.
Additionally, in the smaller breakout sessions, we learned techniques to improve our communication skills. One of the role-playing scenarios was to ask a supervisor for something that you have been meaning to address (for instance a promotion or lab space) but the catch was that we had to videotape one another doing it and then analyze our own video. Communication is obviously very important and body language influences how you come across and feel about yourself. The speaker focused on a dialogue by Amy Cuddy, a social psychologist, who teaches the concept of “Powerposes”. Cuddy and her team have classified different body positions as “high power” or “low power” poses. In general, we practiced delivery with high power poses which are open and relaxed while avoiding the low power poses which are closed and guarded. More info: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C4ACeoqEjeA.
The seminar was especially insightful for me as an academic radiologist and female physician. It was also a comfortable setting to share ideas and ask questions of women in a similar field as well as more experienced mentors in academia. Some of the lessons learned will be carried with me throughout my career and will hopefully be shared with future mentees and trainees of the AAWR.
AAWR Mid Career Professional Leadership Award.
Dr. Salma K Jabbour
2013 AAWR R&E Foundation Mid-Career Award Recipient - Maria Spampinato, MD
I would like to thank the American Association for Women Radiologists for the amazing opportunity to attend the AAMC Mid-Career Women Faculty Professional Development Seminar in December 2013. The target audiences of the seminar are women clinicians and scientists holding leadership positions within their departments or academic institutions. The goal of the seminar is to further enhance the skills and knowledge needed during the leadership development journey. Certain traits and personal characteristics are essential for an effective leader, for example, transparency, integrity, authenticity, responsibility, and vision. However, many of the skills necessary for effective leadership can be learned. The seminar gives plenty of opportunity to practice communication skills and leadership tools, such as conflict management, team-building skills, negotiation skills, building and managing relationships in an effective interactive format. There are many styles and paths to effective leadership because we all have our own personality, temperament, core values, and work styles. An effective leader brings to the table a unique blend of strengths and weaknesses but knows how to use this self-awareness to their advantage in team work dynamics. Leaders can achieve this by teaming up with individuals with different qualities and skills and adjusting communication styles to get their point across in team interactions. Another “pearl of leadership wisdom” is that successful leaders apply to management the same intellectual rigor and data-driven approach used in academic endeavors. This can be accomplished by doing your homework and understanding the relevant metric to achieve leadership and institutional goals. As a future leader it is important to thoroughly know your organization, including the institutional values, mission, people, and finances, to be able to create, influence and manage the institutional culture. I also learned that career advancement and academic success for midcareer women in medicine depends not only on skills and achievements but also on sponsorship, visibility and graceful self-promotion. A woman in medicine may be an accomplished academic physician, but doing her job and waiting to be recognized does not lead to academic success and career advancement. Presenting accomplishments with self-confidence and integrity is a necessary leadership skill. In addition to the excellent speakers, team work skills development opportunities, and “idea factories”, the seminar was very inspirational to me because I had the opportunity to meet and work closely with a group of very talented women in academic medicine. All the participants share the same hectic lifestyle, commitment to something bigger than oneself, and constant pursuit of work-life balance. Everyone took time out of their busy schedules for four days to focus on their career development. These women are the proof that it can be done. Every woman I met during the seminar was multitasking; whether it was providing service to the department, school of medicine, and professional societies, building a busy clinical practice, running a successful research lab, being a mentor to junior faculty and trainees, they were able to balance these duties with the responsibilities of having a family and a busy life outside of the hospital. In summary, the seminar is a great opportunity to refine key leadership qualities and has helped me to understand the role of midcareer women in academic medicine. “Leading from the middle” is a great opportunity to function as a system catalyst, to create collaborations and integrated teams, to bring out the genius in others, to promote a conscientious use of resources in order to move the organization toward its goals. Last piece of advice gathered at the AAMC Mid-Career Women Faculty Professional Development Seminar: dress and view management issues two jobs ahead!