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From Passion to Leadership with Kristine Fortman

Last Thursday, nearly 300 leaders gathered for the 109th Good Leadership Breakfast. The room was charged with a buzzing energy to celebrate the final episode of the spring series, Celebrating the Magic of Managers. The featured speaker was the inspiring Kristine Fortman, CEO of the Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation (MHIF). 

Kristine shared captivating stories from her leadership path – tales of strong, supportive nuns at St. Ben’s who emphasized the importance of women empowering each other, her aspirations to follow in her father’s footsteps as a professor at the University of Minnesota, and her realization that her true passion was in research leadership, a lesson learned from a peer mentor. 

Kristine’s Success Habits

With every Good Leadership Breakfast speaker, we interview a few of their direct reports to identify their leader’s success habits. A success habit is something a leader repeats over and over, because it really works. Kristine’s team highlighted these as her success habits: 

  1. Honor differing/unique talents – different perspectives create innovation
  2. Match leadership styles to situations – being adaptable while still being authentic
  3. Encourage questions – “tell me more” 

Kristine is truly an advocate for Celebrating the Magic of Managers. She supports the idea that managers are creators and keepers of the culture. “Impactful things happen when all of us are reading off the same sheet of music,” she stated, emphasizing the need for everyone in the organization to be aligned for the magic to happen.

Looking Ahead

This fall, mark your calendars for the Good Leadership Breakfast series: In September, with Ethan Casson, CEO of the MN Timberwolves & Lynx, and October, Craig Warren, CEO of the Washburn Center for Children.

Additionally, don’t miss the Good Leadership Conference in November, where the groundbreaking accountability research will be unveiled. It’s an opportunity not to be missed for anyone committed to spreading goodness in your organization. 

Reach out to if you are interested in securing a spot for your organization at the Conference. 

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