Editor’s Note: This is an interview with Gary Polsky prior to the #bealeader Tweetchat held on September 20th 2012
It’s an honor and pleasure to have Gary co-host our #bealeader chat this week to discuss his new book, Everything but the Sex: 5 Strategies to Create Professional Intimate Relationships. For our #bealeader tweetchat this week, Thursday, September 20th at 7pmET, Gary will be answering questions and we will open up the floor for you to participate to ask Gary questions of your own about his book as well as his over 25 years experience as a visionary entrepreneur and health care administrator and hospice service provider.
I had an opportunity to speak with Gary prior to our #bealeader chat and ask him a few questions about his leadership journey, his philosophy and the inspiration for his book.
Question: Gary, how did your journey into leadership begin?
Gary: As the son of a well-respected family practice physician I always knew I wanted to go into healthcare, but I was drawn more to the business and management side of the industry. I earned my master’s degree in healthcare administration and spent ten years in the corporate environment of hospital operations — long enough to realize that if I truly wanted to take control over my vision for my future, I would need to follow an entrepreneurial path. I believe that true leaders are the men and women who build their dreams by making critical connections to further their vision. So that’s what I did…created a written vision for my hospice care company and “sold” my dream to the investors who helped to make it happen.
Question: What are some of the most important lessons you’ve learned from professional mentors?
Gary: Well, the No. 1 thing I learned was how not to treat the people around you! In the corporate world, especially, I watched people I greatly admired from a business standpoint stand in their own way over and over again by making decisions that hurt them personally or showed disrespect to their colleagues. On a more positive note, several mentors drummed into my head the importance of creating a written plan for my vision and gave me vital tips for constructing a plan with variable outcomes … and I learned that if the worst-case scenario is still pretty good, it makes sense to take the risk and do it.
Question: What philosophy do you feel best describes you?
Gary: Continuous quality improvement in all aspects of life…with a glass half-full outlook and utter proactivity. I choose to be excited about the future and all the possibilities it holds, and strive to do everything in my power to continue learning and evolving and enjoying the journey to my fullest potential!
Question: I’ve had a chance to read a preview of Everything but the Sex: 5 Strategies to Create Professional Intimate Relationships. What inspired you to write this book now?
Gary: Thanks for taking the time to read the book, Jen! I was really inspired by the tremendous growth of my hospice care companies, growth fueled primarily by our emphasis on creating Professional Intimate Relationships (PIRs) with prospects and continuing to nurture those PIRs with existing customers. I felt like we had something very special in our sales training model and wanted to share it with the world. In hospice you learn quickly that each day, each moment, must count — so I didn’t want to wait any longer to put my thoughts on paper.
Question: As we wrap up, I like to ask this question: What does it mean to you to #bealeader?
Gary: Soul-filling. There’s nothing more fulfilling for me than surrounding myself with an amazing entourage of high-level muses who share my passion for hospice, or helping grieving children, or personal leadership. To #bealeader means to inspire my muses in all of these causes and to gain inspiration from them — collaborating with creativity, integrity, and love to make a meaningful difference. When you really commit to that kind of leadership it transcends all boundaries in your life — mind, body, and spirit.
For more information about Gary Polsky. You can reach him at his website . Gary can also be found on twitter as @apexlifedesign as well as you can like his Facebook Page and see his videos on YouTube.