Thirty years ago I was fortunate to get the opportunity to combine my formal education as a Medical Technologist (BSMT) with my technical tendencies and joined a startup called Patterson, Gorup, Illig and Associates, now known as Cerner. This year marks thirty years since joining Cerner and 15 since leaving in 1999. I wish to share some of the growing and learning business and systems lessons experienced and learnt while a Cerner Associate.
The second lesson is one of many lessons learned about leadership. Neal had been given advice by Ewing Kauffman about getting the company together periodically to communicate status, build culture and foster ownership. The founders were very good about following that advice. While there were many “company meetings,” one stands out as having the most impact on the way I approach a business problem and architect a solution.
As an early associate, I was able to participate in many sessions where the Vision, Mission, and Corporate Strategies were developed and discussed. The founders knew what they were, they were just letting us fine tune them for our adoption. In 1995 (I believe) the leaders called for an all Cerner associate conference in Kanas City, presumably to get us all on the same page for the next iteration of growth.
Neal gave a presentation on the six sides of systems architecture. We all got Cubes as reminders, mine sits on my desk to this day.