Harry Lukens has a cultlike following among the 315 people he oversees as senior VP and CIO at Lehigh Valley Health Network, which runs two hospitals as well as community health centers and clinics in eastern Pennsylvania.
Not your typical manager, Lukens every few weeks convenes what he calls his "Wild Ideas Team" where he has one rule: "no snickering." Every idea, no matter how off the wall, gets considered. Medication bar coding, which Lehigh has had in place since 2006, came from that group.
Lukens also hosts what his secretary has dubbed "Harry Hours," taking employees to lunch or happy hour to get feedback and answer questions.
Lukens' tech group has a low turnover rate. It was 30% when he arrived 18 years ago and went negative last year when two people returned to the fold. "We make sure people get the education they need, on our dime," he said.
Lukens is serious about the work he does. His mantra: "Technology in healthcare has no value unless it's supporting patient care in some way."