A "Typical" Day in My Life
| Jun 19, 2012 7:00 PM
I’m frequently asked what a typical day is like for me. I always struggle with the answer because it feels like every day is so different. As a result, I don’t ever answer this question satisfactorily. Perhaps, I can describe one day, not a “typical” day, but just one day in the life of the SVP.
I wake up around 6:30 a.m. (I rarely use an alarm clock) and grab my laptop, which sits nicely with its back half on the lip of the stair stepper, with the front half resting on the stationary handles (why these aren’t designed to hold a laptop, I don’t know). For the next half hour, I respond to e-mails, address issues that are in my “needs response” queue, and try to ignore the fact that I am actually exercising (for some reason, I don’t get that endorphin rush that most people get when they exercise.) Then after a quick shower, we get the girls ready, which mostly entails making sure their teeth are brushed and they have suitable (sort-of matching) clothes. It’s the summer, and so the preparation of four lunches and four breakfasts is part of the ritual. (Note to any morning-type entrepreneurs out there: a service that prepares and delivers reasonably health-packed lunches for summer camp kids could be very well-received by families all over!). After we drop off the kids, I head to the office.
Today, I have back-to-back meetings from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. I am meeting with two chairs, a clinical leader, a member of my SVP team, a dean, and a faculty member. I am also hosting a going away party for a beloved member of our staff, meeting and thanking a lovely couple for their generous philanthropic support, and interviewing a potential new hire for development. The topics will range from strategy to operations, from fund-raising to program building, from clinical to education to research to community relations. Every 30-45 minutes is different. The meetings are mostly one-on-one. And with each meeting, I get to know my team here at the University that much better. I appreciate their strengths that much more. And I continue to think about the direction of the institution with that much more information.
At 5:30 p.m. today, I leave the office to go home. I’ve prepared a few meals over the weekend that are stored in the freezer, so dinner preparation is quick. We have a lively recounting of the days activities at dinner. The children go up to bed for their bedtime stories and hugs and then at the end of the day, for the last couple of hours, I review e-mails again. I send off thoughts or suggestions that were raised during the course of the day. I reply to those that have come in during the day. If the e-mails seem less pressing, I read. Right now I’m reading Jonah Lehrer’s book, “How We Decide,” having just finished his book, “Imagine,” (sent to me as part of the MUSE—My U Signature Experience—initiative this summer), which I thought was full of interesting ideas on innovation.
And that was today.
Author: Vivian S. Lee, M.D., Ph.D., M.B.A.
About the Author: Dr. Vivian S. Lee is the Senior Vice President for Health Sciences at the University of Utah, Dean of the University of Utah School of Medicine, and CEO of University of Utah Health Care. Read her full bio herecomments powered by Disqus