Cultivating Leadership in a Transitioning Industry

January 28, 2019

Pat Tamburrino, VP of LMI's Health market, chatted with WashingtonExec on his thoughts on STEM, LMI's footprint in the healthcare industry, and his personal reflections on leadership. As a federal executive who transitioned to the private sector, he has valuable insight on transitioning workforce, strategy and innovation, and how to be mindful in daily task execution. 

What is one of the biggest challenges you have overcome in your career? 

As a 40-year federal executive who transitioned to the private sector, that itself was a huge challenge. A lot of federal executives have real challenges with the transition. Success requires creating an entirely new mindset. I had to acquire a wide variety of new skills, among them was the ability to effectively manage profit and loss in a business unit while tracking a myriad of financial metrics. This was a completely new task to overcome.

I also had to shift my outlook. As a federal executive, I was concerned with policy development and implementation. I was also a key decision maker in many significant issues affecting human capital planning and veteran’s support in the Department of Defense. Now I am an advisor and consultant to government agencies. My role is to give them the best analysis and advice possible, not to make policy decisions. It changes the way I present ideas—I have to be more direct in my analysis. My arguments have to be persuasive since I am now asking clients to accept some percentage of risk based on my advice. It’s a different experience, but is shares the same goal of serving citizens and ensuring good government.

Pat Tamburrino GH2030

Pat Tamburrino Jr. at LMI's 2017 GH2030.

Do you have an example of a major technology initiative that you (or your team) has initiated and implemented for LMI?

In our healthcare practice, we are making extensive use of machine learning and artificial intelligence. We use bots to improve our ability to query enormous volumes of health data in an efficient and effective manner. We have also demonstrated the use of machine learning to analyze insurance claim data and detect data outliers which point toward potential fraud, waste, and abuse. LMI’s suite of proprietary tools and our deep functional expertise enable us to see the bigger picture when it comes to large sets of data; we’re able to apply cross-disciplinary capabilities to better serve our clients. Our specialized calculators, data query tools, and dashboards enable us to pull together reports and insights that make operational healthcare and benefit decisions easier. 

What's one thing you'll do differently in 2019? Looking at 2019, what lies ahead for you and the company? What makes you a person to watch in 2019?

I’m trying to manage my time more efficiently and effectively. As a senior leader within my organization, I think it’s easy to be overcome by the churn of the day—meetings, phone calls, and worst of all, email. These little tasks leave little time to think strategically and focus on the art of the possible. Therefore, I am deliberately blocking time each day to work on strategic initiatives and go beyond the immediate problem in a mindful manner.

From a business perspective, there are several functional offerings we are focusing more broadly, including data analytics in the health space, human capital issues across the civilian agencies, and technology business management.

I also see my team making great strides in the area of healthcare quality measures. We are a widely known vendor in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) space with a great reputation. With our recent win of the Measure and Instrument Development and Support IDIQ, and other upcoming opportunities, we are placing a large bet on becoming a major player in this space. It’s an exciting time for our Health market and the organization as a whole.

Pat Tamburrino Jr., Office

Could you share a successful reorganization effort that you led or initiated in your career?

My first example is the transition of the Navy’s systems commands (air, sea, space) from traditional, stove-piped organizations to competency aligned organizations. In this reorganization, staff were aligned into functional domains and deployed to projects based on need. The functional leaders made sure the staff were trained, obtained the tools to perform their work, and were ready to support program managers on day 1. This proved to be a more agile and responsive alignment. It affected well over 150,000 employees.

The second example is the transition in and out of the National Security System, a major reorganization effort I led for the Department of Defense. To improve performance management, we transitioned the DoD career workforce to an alternative rating system based on simple, clear, and achievable performance objectives and regular dialogue between staff and supervisors. This transition impacted nearly 1 million civil servants. While the design was adequate and the intent was clear, the system failed and Congress directed major reengineering. I led the transition both in and out of the system.

— Pat Tamburrino Jr.

What are some significant financial milestones you've supported as a leader in the last 3 years? 

As a consulting practice vice president, I look at my assigned book of business for trends. We have grown significantly in the last few years—in the 8–10 percent range. This has proven to me—and is now being communicated to my team—that there are huge opportunities within an evolving and shifting government policy and spending environment.

The government has no shortage of important issues and challenges. The key is to create offerings which add value, to advance thinking in new and innovative directions. If you can offer the leadership of government solutions which, in turn, produce results at fair market value, you can be tremendously successful.

Watch Pat's Interview on Government Matters

Watch the full episode from December 27, 2018 for government contracting’s biggest moments of the year


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