Business Women of Tomorrow

Championing Patients and Curiosity: Navigating a Mission-Oriented Healthcare Career with Haley Whitman at DaVita

In the dynamic world of corporate healthcare, where innovation and a commitment to a mission are paramount, Haley Whitman has found her niche. A graduate of the University of Colorado Boulder with a degree in Information Analytics and Operations Management, Haley’s journey has taken her from the halls of academia to the frontlines of patient care and research.

What attracted you to start your career in this industry? What do you enjoy about working in this industry? What do you want undergraduate students to know about this industry?

I knew I wanted to work for a mission-oriented organization. I wanted to wake up each morning and feel good about the work I was set out to do that day, while being surrounded by coworkers who were also dedicated to the same mission. I was fortunate enough to find that culture in the corporate healthcare space at DaVita. The industry is fast-paced and increasingly competitive, which requires my team to drive towards innovation. This ensures that our work is always evolving and never repetitive. Undergrads should know that while there is a learning curve associated with this industry, there is also nearly unlimited opportunity for growth.

What unique skills and abilities help someone to stand out in your particular area of business? How can undergraduates students develop or bolster these attributes?

One of the skills I always recommend to recent graduates is the importance of having natural curiosity. Continuous education doesn’t stop when you leave the classroom or earn your degree. Healthcare, and more specifically, dialysis is a very unique area of business. Developing the muscle of being naturally curious allows you to gain a more intimate knowledge of the business and work being done, while showcasing your engagement as a new employee. Ask questions and question the status quo – healthcare is in need of change-makers.

What advice would you give undergraduate women who wish to pursue a career in business? What about your industry specifically?

Know your worth, trust your gut, and stand your ground. No one is a better advocate for you than you are for yourself. Don’t expect anyone to give you what you need unless you ask for it yourself.

What is your role? How do your work responsibilities fit within the context of the overall organization? Why is your work important?

I am a Manager of Patient Research and Insights at DaVita. My role is focused on enriching the organization’s understanding of the patients we serve every day. The more we understand who our patients are as people, the more we can optimize the care that we provide to patients every day. My team acts as a ‘champion’ of the patient to ensure that patients’ feedback and experiences are taken into account when the organization is making strategic decisions.

How would you describe the organizational culture at your employer? What qualities make it unique?

Unique is the perfect word to describe DaVita’s culture. One of DaVita’s core values is fun and the company truly does emphasize that aspect of work – we are definitely a work hard, play hard organization. DaVita is a Fortune 500 company and has dozens of different corporate teams that each support independent functions of the business. Each team gets to choose its own unique, fun name – some of my favorite team names are Scouts and Lifeguards!


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