Can leaders from different fields learn from one another? If so, how can this learning be accomplished? On March 10, the third Bimat Mandel session of 2013-2014 took place at the Mandel Leadership Institute (MLI) on the topic of “Outside the Box and Back: Leadership Journeys in Medicine, Psychology and Law.” Fellows from the Mandel School for Educational Leadership (MSEL) interviewed three prominent leaders of different professions. The goal: to learn about the ways to break through the boundaries of a given profession, to foster new ideas and innovative methods, and then to apply these back to accepted professional practice.
Dr. Dafna Meitar, a pediatric oncologist and the coordinator of the medical education program at Tel Aviv University, was interviewed by Tali Asher, an MSEL fellow whose field of expertise is literary education and librarianship. Meitar drew the distinction between “engaging in medicine” and “being a doctor." Meitar recounted how she helped spur the adoption of a more holistic approach to patient care, outlining the changes she initiated in the training process for physicians. In her opinion, cultivating a personal vision and identity, coupled with introspection and reflection, is an integral part of professional development in the field of medicine.
Professor Emanuel Berman, a psychoanalyst who also teaches at Haifa University, was interviewed by Tamar Shwartz, a social worker and MSEL fellow. Berman recounted how his personal and professional biography prepared him to introduce changes into the strict and hierarchical training program for psychoanalysts in Israel, allowing for an approach that involves greater dialogue between supervisors and trainees.
Finally, attorney Michael Tsur, a pioneer of mediation in Israel, was interviewed by Udit Corinaldi-Sirkis, a lawyer and MSEL fellow. Tsur provided a review of the personal path he had taken toward understanding the principles of mediation, and his belief in its advantages over other standard legal procedure. He placed special emphasis on his belief that the individual was equipped to decide for himself what was best for him, and pointed out the way in which mediation allows for the expression of personal emotions that are so intrinsic to conflicts.
Dr. Daniel Marom, head of pedagogical and tutorial development at the Mandel Leadership Institute, said that the accounts given by the three interviewees clearly demonstrated the validity of the working assumption at MLI: professional leadership is created when people go beyond the accepted paradigms and protocols in their fields.
The evening opened and concluded with selections on the harp by music thanatologist Adira Ben Aharon.