Effective Leaders Fueled by Empathy

Jennifer Byrne, CEO, Javara Research

Effective leaders draw on many sources for inspiration. At the top of that list, say many successful clinical trial executives, is empathy. A leader’s passion to inspire and bring out the best in their team can be fueled by sharing stories of professional setbacks and successes.

“As leaders, it’s our responsibility to learn other people’s perspectives and not have blind spots,” says Jennifer Byrne, CEO of Javara Research. She’s part of a panel of female leaders who will appear during the next round of the Virtual ACRP 2020 conference in September.


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“It’s so vital to seek out new perspectives and learn about challenges faced by others you might not have even imagined,” Byrne says. Doing so, she maintains, stretches one’s capacity for compassion and powerful leadership.

“You’re going to get untold stories on our panel,” says moderator Katherine Vandebelt, global head of clinical innovation for Oracle Health Sciences. “This won’t just be the LinkedIn biographical information,” she adds. “Each of our panelists has a different experience, with different cultural backgrounds and life situations.”

Byrne hopes the panel session will “give voice to distinct perspectives and journeys” so that all might learn from the sharing.

“It’s comforting to know you aren’t alone in facing a given challenge,” Vandebelt adds. “We’re going to offer new perspectives and approaches for dealing with some of those challenges.”

Other panelists include Patricia Leuchten, founder and CEO of The Avoca Group; Jeanne Hecht, MBA, PMP, CEO of Ora, Inc.; and Corsee Sanders, PhD, board director and strategic consultant for Juno Therapeutics.

Author: Michael Causey