Lucas Milinovich is the Director of Urgent & Ambulatory Care at McMaster Childrens Hospital. He’s been part of the Hamilton Health Sciences team for 15 years.
Tell us about your first day at HHS.
My first day was a proud moment. It was great to be embarking on my career and, looking back, I am proud of what I’ve accomplished and the people with whom I have been able to work.
What made you enter your field of work?
It literally was at the last minute. I didn’t have all of the pre-requisites so I was a late acceptance and had a week to make up my mind towards the end of summer. A year in, I decided school wouldn’t be a bad thing so I went for it. Best decision I ever made.
What do you love most about your job?
The opportunity to work with people. Whether patients or team members, working alongside them is something I value.
Describe one of your most challenging days at work.
When I used to manage the Emergency Department at the General, we had a young baby come in without vital signs. Although patients often come in this way in that department, it was tough for myself and my team given the age of the patient. However, it was inspirational to watch the team pull together to do all they could for that patient and their family and also to see them support one another when the result wasn’t what we had hoped.
Do you have a best friend or confidant at HHS? Tell us about him/her.
I don’t know if I would say I have a best friend. Although I would say I have made a lot of relationships along the way which I value. I have had a lot of mentors along the way who nourished my leadership, including Isabel Hayward and Heather Renshaw (retired).
What do you wish you had more time for at work?
In this role you spend a lot of time planning and, while you do get to work with great people, the scale isn’t the same. For that reason I would say I miss working alongside larger teams. Seeing them reach their potential was something I really enjoyed. I would also say that I miss patients. At the end of the day, they are why we all come to work.
What do you do after work to unwind?
Jog, Golf, Watch Standardbred Horse races
What are your favourite ways to spend your free time?
Golfing, Playing with my two boys, Running
What do you eat to keep you energized at work?
When you tell people what you do, how do they usually react?
I think they don’t really understand what it is I do and I would say they seem surprised. At work I wear suits and that couldn’t be further from reality outside of work. Another reason people often seem surprised is perhaps my age.
Tell us about your most gratifying experience at HHS.
The 2014 engagement survey results. We were one of the only clinical units to be within the internal top 25% corporately and this number represented a huge leap from the previous results in 2012. My team worked really hard at making valuable improvements and the survey results validated that work.
What’s one thing people would be surprised to learn about you?
I have my horse trainer’s license and used to have my driver’s license to compete in horse races. But it was scary and I quickly realized that my future wasn’t in racing horses.
What are your short and long term career goals?
Currently I am supporting the Strategic Ambulatory Review. I see a lot of opportunity to further improve the experience of our patients while also improving the provider and team experience. Seeing this project through to recommendations and then implementation is something I am looking forward to in the near term. As for the future, I have found my niche in leadership. Everyday is both challenging and rewarding. Furthering my leadership, wherever that may take me, is definitely in my long term plans.