Dr Sunita Maheshwari | The Telrad Group
Dr Sunita Maheshwari is taking healthcare forward by cracking smart answers to traditional problems and emerging challenges - by making the intersection of technology, innovation and leadership her own.
Dr Sunita Maheshwari, voted Outlook Business WOW 2019 (Woman of Worth) and 2014’s ‘Amazing Indian’ award by Times Now, is a US Board certified Pediatric Cardiologist trained at Yale University. She runs an e-teaching program for PG’s in pediatric cardiology and is an inspirational speaker who has given over 200 lectures, including several TEDx talks.
Dr Maheshwari is also a healthcare entrepreneur and - going by her own Linkedin profile description, is the ‘Chief Dreamer’ at The Telrad Group which includes Teleradiology Solutions, Telrad tech, RXDX healthcare, Healtheminds and two foundations-People4people and Telrad Foundation. Sunita also sits on the Board of HDFC Bank and Glaxo Smith Kline India.
All leaders have a signature view of the world. A trademark mantra, so to speak. So what is the one big concept or philosophy that defines Sunita’s approach to life and guides her success mantra?
“Finding solutions! I think that about sums up my approach to everything-patients and medical care, entrepreneurship, parenting, handling aged parents at home and everything else that life throws at me”, captures the lady who leads with the power of ideas, courage and, of course, dreams.
We are curious and want Sunita to expand on her mantra - and its potential to create impact - a little more. She readily obliges…
“Whenever I hit a problem or issue - my mind immediately goes into solution finding mode: ie researching solutions, thinking of various ways to get over the road block and so on. I don’t dwell on why the issue occurred, but instead, I move into short term and long term problem solving instead.
As an example, when COVID hit, patients stopped coming to our chain of clinics (RXDX healthcare) as they were afraid of face to face interactions. We took a decision to continue to pay all salaries and keep all our staff even though there was no work for them for several months.
My brain went into overdrive on how to stay afloat during this time. Brainstorming sessions with the team resulted in us quickly pivoting into a 'phygitial' model of health care, doing COVID CARE AT HOME via telemedicine etc. This enabled us to continue to support the communities around us and survive as an entity.”
Most life-altering sagas have an inflexion point - the bend, turn or fork on the road where the journey changed for good. Was there any person or experience that left a similar impact on Sunita? The visionary transformation specialist narrates…
“Being a doctor is relatively predictable in terms of daily work and living. When I morphed from a full time doctor to a part time doctor and part time entrepreneur, I was not aware of the challenges of entrepreneurial life - the unpredictability, the constant issues that rear their head which require immediate attention, the criticality of building a core support framework or team one can rely on.
I realised that when a problem arises, most people point out that there is a problem and a few suggest solutions. Very few actually dive deep and implement those solutions. I worked on suggesting solutions and actually pushing the implementation of the changes. I believe this is one of the reasons we were able to scale The Telerad Group from a one man start-up in our home to several entities stretching across more than 800 family members without VC/PE or any external funding.
Great minds leave a rub-off effect on the lives they touch, transforming them for good. So how is Sunita’s ‘personal approach to life’ influencing and impacting her ecosystem - such as her teams, partners, stakeholders? Sunita ponders out loud in characteristic ‘analyser mode’…
“Today, everyone in our organisation knows that if they walk up to me with a problem, I will also ask them to think of a solution. And if they come with a solution, I will ask them if they can implement it. This culture has pervaded the organisation and we now have more problem solvers than problem creators!”
So what lies ahead for this intrepid ‘answer builder’? What is the big goal or problem she wants to unravel in the future - powered by her signature philosophy? Sunita shares…
“Being passionate about healthcare, I would love to find a solution to inequality in health care delivery and access.”
Trueblue entrepreneurs build more than just businesses and organizations. They build new thinking, attracting new generations who feel a strong connect with the fresh approach. How does Sunita see her legacy shaping over time - particularly with the next generation of leaders? She responds with a conviction…
“Solution finders willing to go the extra mile to ensure the problem is fixed for the short and long term will always do well in life. They are the ones who make things happen. The world needs more of them.”
A brief - but deeply inspiring - session is approaching its finale. We prepare to sign off by requesting Sunita to share a short line or two about VOH, and how tribute profiles such as Idea Leaders are important to add direction, inspiration and positive energy to the healthcare community. The leader - who is leaving a fast growing mark on the evolution of healthcare into a bigger and better future - shares generously…
“VOH is enabling conversations and ideas that may inspire other doctors and medical professionals to do different things and move in new directions.”
*This story is published by VOH*
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