Back to Newsroom

JAELYNN WILLIAMS SITS DOWN WITH HER STORY PODCAST TO DISCUSS HER UNCONVENTIONAL “FLIGHT PLAN” TO CEO OF AIR METHODS

by

Women make up 70% of the healthcare workforce but only 20% of its leadership. Her Story explores the careers of bold and influential women from Silicon Valley to Capitol Hill and learn how they’ve overcome the odds and see what’s beyond the glass ceiling. It was developed by women for women to share stories that expand their vision of what is possible as healthcare leaders.

Jaelynn Williams, CEO of Air Methods opened up about the challenges of stepping into a CEO role, advice for first-time CEOs, and importantly her ambitious goals being a leader for Air Methods on this week’s episode of the Her Story Podcast.

She spoke with host Sanjula Jain, Ph.D. about her unconventional path that started as an English major that landed her a job in marketing and communications at 3M. Working her way up the ladder with an eagerness to absorb feedback, she gained business acumen and experience in Six Sigma statistical analysis.

Williams was given the advice to start with the end in mind, which inspired her move from 3M to GE Healthcare Digital. She eventually moved on to Air Methods to create and lead the marketing team but was soon promoted to be the CEO. JaeLynn provides a thoughtful discussion about working towards goals, being a first time CEO, and the future of aviation in healthcare.

Here are a few highlights:

“I spent so much of my time in my early career feeling like I was an imposter and I was stretching myself to take on these roles. There was a lot of time where I somehow felt like, ‘Am I an imposter? Is this real?’ I think that’s a female way to feel, so stretch yourself. Try things out there and don’t feel like you’re an imposter doing it.”

“Begin with the end in mind. That’s really helped me on the balance of work-life and family. We’re juggling glass balls and rubber balls. You’re always juggling, so you’re always going to drop a ball. The key in life is to make sure that you don’t drop any of the glass ones. I think about that a lot as I balance work and family life. You must start with the end in mind before you have the decisions and decide what your glass balls are and what you are not going to drop. I’ll probably never be CEO of the Red Cross, but start working backward from that and know what the glass balls are in your life before you get to the place where you have to make the decision about them.”

Additionally, Jaelynn offered advice to first-time CEOs. “It’s about the people. Look at your leaders and your team because they are going to help you implement your vision and take you where you need to be. Something that becomes really apparent once you become CEO is you do not personally control anything. Everything gets done through someone else, so it makes leadership the most vital component of the company’s success.”

Check out the full episode here.