ILA Podcast

Leading From a Place of Love

Phronesis: Practical Wisdom for Leaders

with Dr. Akram Boutros


Dr. Akram Boutros joins Scott to discuss his leadership of MetroHealth in Ohio, its phenomenal growth, and his focus on inclusion, diversity, and equity in healthcare.

A Quote From This Episode

“You only have to lead from a place of love. Leaders don’t lead organizations; they lead other people. And if you don’t truly love the people you work with and who put the time in to support the organization’s goals, you’re not going to fare very well.”

About Dr. Akram Boutros

From the moment he arrived in Cleveland, Dr. Akram Boutros’ visionary thinking has inspired MetroHealth to elevate medical care by providing and integrating social services to build equity, promote justice, and improve the health of people and communities.

With the 2019 creation of the Institute for H.O.P.E.™ (Health, Opportunity, Partnership, and Empowerment), MetroHealth is connecting patients and neighbors to fresh food, stable housing, education, career training, and other services that keep them healthy.

Dr. Boutros paired that work with a $1 billion reimagination of the system’s main campus on West 25th Street. The new MetroHealth Glick Center, which opens in October 2022 and will be the first hospital in a park in the country, has sparked the rebirth of the surrounding neighborhood while preserving its Hispanic culture.

Dr. Boutros’ focus on inclusion, diversity, and equity is just as significant. In 2020, 39% of MetroHealth’s new hires were racially or ethnically diverse.

Under his leadership, MetroHealth has grown to more than 20 community health centers, four hospitals, five MetroExpressCare locations, and ten pharmacies. Those are in addition to MetroHealth’s main-campus medical center, which is home to the area’s most experienced Level I Adult Trauma Center, Ohio’s only Ebola Treatment Center, and the only adult and pediatric trauma and burn center in the state.

MetroHealth’s annual revenue grew from $785 million to more than $1.5 billion during his tenure. MetroHealth now treats more than 300,000 patients at more than 1.4 million visits annually. Since 2013, the health system has created more than 1,800 new jobs, sent doctors into more than a dozen local schools, and received the largest donation in its history – $42 million from JoAnn and Bob Glick.

Host Scott J. Allen

Scott Allen

Scott J. Allen, Ph.D., is the Standard Products—Dr. James S. Reid Chair in Management at John Carroll University. He is an associate professor and teaches courses in leadership, management skills, and executive communication. He is also a communications coach, consultant, author, podcast host, and entrepreneur. For almost two decades, he’s worked with clients to improve their leadership and communication skills. Learn more about Scott here.

About Phronesis

Phronesis: Practical Wisdom for Leaders offers a smart, fast-paced discussion on all things leadership. Scott and his expert guests cover timely, relevant topics and incorporate practical tips designed to help you make a difference in how you lead and live.