December 5, 2013 10:06:44 AM
Robert Huffman of Mathiston, director of Facility Management at North Mississippi Medical Center-West Point, recently completed the American Society for Healthcare Engineering Leadership Institute.
Most ASHE members get plenty of training in the technical skills needed to do their jobs, including areas such as maintenance and operations; code compliance; and planning, design and construction. But one area of knowledge critical to professional success is often overlooked in college programs and on-the-job training: leadership skills.
To fill that gap, ASHE created the Leadership Institute nearly a decade ago. The program offers emerging leaders intensive training in skills they can use to manage employees, improve their productivity and generally become more effective leaders.
The two-day training is offered to ASHE members who have received the ASHE Emerging Regional Leader award, members of the ASHE Board of Directors and other outstanding leaders. Each year approximately 15 of the 11,000 ASHE membership are awarded the Leadership Training course. Huffman serves as Region 4 representative for the American Society of Healthcare Engineers Board of Directors. Region 4 includes Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and Florida.
First-time attendees start in the program's Year 1 and are invited back for three more years before they graduate. Huffman is a dedicated member of ASHE and has perfect attendance at local chapter meetings since his initial membership in 1979. He first served as the society's Prairie Council Representative in 2000. In 2001 when the MHA Society for Health Facilities Management began participating in the ASHE Affiliation Awards Program, he chaired the original committee and provided extensive leadership to create education guidelines for his local chapter.
In 2003, Huffman attained Fellow Member status, the MHA society's highest level of achievement. He served as President for the MHA Society for Healthcare Engineers/Facility Managers from 2008 to 2010. In 2008, he accepted the Gold Level Affiliated Chapter award from ASHE for the MHA Society for Healthcare Engineers/Facility Managers. The chapter achieved Platinum Level in 2009, 2010 and 2011.
He previously served as president of the Mississippi Hospital Association's Society for Healthcare Engineers/Facility Managers. Huffman joined the staff of Ivy Memorial Hospital, the predecessor of NMMC-West Point, in 1977.