With Mount Sinai’s latest redevelopment in full swing, we continue to share stories of the people working tirelessly behind the scenes to make this project a success. We recently sat down with Tanya McDonald to learn more about her and the important role the operational readiness team plays before, during and after construction.

Tell us about your role.

As Director of Operational Readiness, my role is to listen to people, connect the dots and be responsive to the changing needs of our people throughout redevelopment. While construction proceeds under the leadership of the Redevelopment Project Office, my team and I are focused on ensuring our patients, families, staff and physicians have what they need to get through transitions seamlessly. I also aim to go the extra mile to keep our people engaged and excited for their brand new spaces.

Can you give me an example of operational readiness in action?

Support Services’ successful move comes to mind. Carlin Lalonde, Operational Readiness Site Manager, supported the program staff and leadership through training and orientation to their new space, and brought together the right people to effectively implement new technologies. Carlin also collaborated with the team to orchestrate the right sequence of events on move day to get the job done while ensuring operations were maintained 24/7.

How did you get into the field of operational readiness?

I have been working in health care for over 20 years in various capacities. I was a front-line Medical Radiation Technologist for 15 years, and have extensive experience in project management, leadership, change management and informatics.

I had my first foray into operational readiness as a Director of Pharmacy, Laboratory Services and Medical Imaging, and I was on the receiving end of new spaces, processes and workflows in a brand new hospital. That’s when I developed a passion for redevelopment – specifically all the steps involved in turning an exciting vision into reality. Recalling how I led my teams through extensive change brought on by redevelopment guides my approach when working with teams facing similarly significant changes.

What phase of the project are you most excited about?

It’s impossible to choose one specific part of the project because each part is transformational in its own right. We already have opened several state-of-the-art spaces, and I look forward to continuing to celebrate these incredible milestones. For me, it is exciting to witness how our vision translates into a completely transformed care experience for our people.

What’s your personal mantra?

“We won’t skip a beat during construction” inspires me every day in this project. In my personal life, I have always lived by that famous quote by Gandhi, “be the change you want to see in the world.”

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