Without leadership alignment, it is nearly impossible for organizations to maintain outstanding results. Successful organizational leaders willingly prioritize the company’s and team’s goals over their own in order to achieve alignment. One of a chief executive’s most important responsibilities is to align leaders and assist them in achieving a single focus. The path to organizational efficiency, effectiveness, and excellence is accelerated by this focus. The capacity to transform an organization’s culture while remaining true to its top priorities is a characteristic shared by pioneering leaders. This enriches employees, delights customers, and generates value for shareholders.
One of these pioneering leaders in the healthcare industry is David H. Mowry, who likes to establish a culture in which the team is united behind a single set of shared goals and objectives. David is the Chief Executive Officer of Cutera. He is a seasoned executive who has a track record of successful execution and transformative outcomes, as well as success in the medical device industry.
David talked about his journey and what Cutera has done for him in an interview with Corporate Leaders Magazine.
The interview’s highlights are as follows:
Please inform our readers of Cutera’s leadership team’s composition.
The most crucial indicator of execution is having the appropriate leadership team in place, and Cutera is a story about execution. As a result, the establishment of a dependable and unified leadership team dedicated to a single strategy for the creation of value was my top and most pressing concern when I joined the company.
Two main components were missing from the current leadership structure:1) technical excellence in a number of important functions; 2) leaders who are in agreement and committed to putting the company’s goals ahead of their own goals. Nearly 85% of the senior leadership team has changed hands since I took over in the summer of 2019. When we were looking for new leaders, our first priority was functional competence, followed by teamwork and collaboration. Cutera now has an amazing group of committed senior leaders who have earned each other’s respect and provide commitment and support as a result of the process.
Describe Cutera, its cutting-edge medical aesthetics products, how it stands out in the energy-based aesthetics market, and how it meets customer requirements.
Established by seasoned laser engineers, Cutera is still driven by an innovative spirit. Our innovation strategy shifted at some point to that of a fast follower, with our devices bringing enhanced capabilities at the cost of increased complexity. We have made two fundamental changes to rectify this: First, we innovate to great value, offering either “better outcomes at the same costs,” “same outcomes at a lower cost,” or, the most appealing option, the home run of “better outcomes at the same costs.”Our second shift is moving away from fast-follower devices that are over-engineered and toward being the first to market for unmet clinical needs.
What obstacles did you encounter since joining the organization?
There have been both small and big problems. The COVID-19 Pandemic unquestionably presents an obvious macro challenge. Cutera, like other people, needed to act quickly and decisively if it was going to survive, and we did.
When I think back, I am very pleased with our efforts during this time because we not only made it through the challenge, but we also emerged stronger, more aligned, and more focused on our customers. We upgraded our commercial talent while simultaneously strengthening our balance sheet. In terms of micro-challenges, we had a weak supply chain and high costs, both of which have been significantly improved by our margin expansion programs. This has made our business more profitable and made it possible to reinvest a lot of money into our business to help it grow over time.
How would you characterize your leadership style, and how does it affect Cutera employees?
After earning my undergraduate degree, I served in the Army, where I quickly learned two things: First of all, everyone has something to teach you. The open exchange of ideas is sparked by humility, which almost always leads to the best solution to a problem. The importance of people was my second takeaway.
The most important resource will always be human beings. We should always treat our teams and employees with respect, which means sharing data, actively communicating with them, giving them authority, and allowing them to occasionally fail. The idea that you only succeed when you give up is one of the related leadership style tidbits that I use to guide my own. Additionally, I believe that leaders should publicly reward results whenever possible and take the time to acknowledge the effort. Another tenet of mine is that good often triumphs over perfect and that we must capitalize on our successes and keep moving forward.
Give a detailed explanation of the company’s values and work environment. At Cutera, we have adopted a set of “Transformative Values” because we believe that incorporating these values into who we are and what we do will help us move faster toward our common goal of “Creating the Future of Medical Aesthetics.” These principles are gaining traction and contributing to the culture we seek. Some of these values are:
Aligned means working together as a team toward a common set of goals.
Bold: Extending our reach and increasing our impact.
Data-Driven: Alignment is improved when disagreements are resolved with data rather than opinions.
Concentration: Doing fewer things well.
Fun: Take pleasure in the work you’re given and the people you work with.
How would you advise aspiring business leaders interested in entering the healthcare sector?
Because I have been able to contribute in some small way to the value stream of enhancing the quality of life for others, I have found my more than 30-year career in medical devices and healthcare to be enriching. The expression “do what you love, and you will never work a day in your life” is one that everyone has heard. This saying applies to all of my assignments in the healthcare sector, regardless of sector, business structure (public or private), or company maturity (startup or large-cap strategic company). I can’t imagine running a business other than healthcare.
How do you stay afloat in today’s volatile market and intense competition?
After COVID-19, this is unquestionably a frantic and competitive environment; however, businesses and leaders must maintain their course by continuing to pay attention to employees and customers and providing unique services that add value. And sometimes, all it takes to slow down and do the right thing is to calm the pace, refocus the team, and let go of pressures that aren’t good for the process.
What is the company’s vision for the future? And what is the most effective route to follow to get there?
Our mission at Cutera is to “Create the future of Medical Aesthetics.” This is our unambiguous vision. This includes being the partner of choice for our primary clients, who are plastic surgeons, dermatologists, and “med spa” doctors. We keep our focus on the right conditions, look for first-mover opportunities to meet unmet clinical needs, and offer our service as a true partner in this way. All of Cutera is well along this journey as we speak.