Give us a brief introduction of yourself
I am the oldest in a family of six children. I went to several universities because at the time I was not interested in getting a lot of education. I wanted to be out in the world. I wanted to make money. I wanted to race cars, and I wanted to be in a rock band and things like those. I was interested in music so I went over to Colonel University for two years, then did my Bachelors degree (BSc) in Economics at Ohio State and later I went to the Harvard Business School for my MBA. This was not enough for me so later I went to the University of Michigan, Law School and got my law degree there. It was between my MBA and Law School that I went to Mauritius for two years. I was part of a small group that was preparing a five year economic development plan for the country which was very exciting. Mauritius is a very wonderful place; its like tropical island but larger than that, with wonderful people.
From MBA to Jurist Doctor Degree then practising law and eventually to research and lecturing at Harvard; what inspired the diversity?
Most of my career decisions have not been well thought out. I had already graduated from the business school, came back from Mauritius and discovered that I did not want to take the direction that most of my classmates had taken; to go work for large companies in the US selling soap powder, automobiles etc. I saw that was not for me and decided to combine my MBA with a law degree. I could have been more creative in my choices but I think law served as a major eye-opener in my career.
What was your career in law like?
After I got through law school, I worked with a professor at the Harvard School of Public Health. He was a professor of legal medicine and that is the application of legal principles in medicine. I worked there for two years, doing research and writing articles. I then switched to the State Government in Massachusetts where I worked as a lawyer for four years. I wrote laws, regulations. I also helped conduct hearings and for a couple of years, I represented the state in court proceedings.
After leaving the Government I worked for a Chinese firm called the Chinese Economic Development Corporation whose goal was to cause economic development. I acted like a venture capitalist in this firm.
I have worked in Harvard fulltime and part-time for about fifteen to twenty years in the department of Policy and Management. I have taught several courses, three of which I have developed; one of it being managing people in the Healthcare sector.
What made you stop practising law and engage in the academic field?
With time, I discovered that creating new things brought me more satisfaction than creating solutions to problems. So far I have not been practising law even though I have all the qualifications.
What are some of the challenges you have faced throughout your career?
One of the challenges I have faced in my career has to do with my research in different countries. These are countries I had never been to before, I dont know their policies, and how they implement their healthcare policies, what are the boundaries of my research and the language barrier.
Another challenge, its really hard to write a book. My attention span is very short. I will write just a few sentences and my mind is off to other things. Its either I will look at other things on the internet and forget I was writing or I will just leave the writing and do something else. Actually for my last book, I had done nothing for the first one and a half years and therefore had only six months to finish it.
What is your teaching style?
I dont lecture; I prefer a more interactive session among the students and myself. I like to ask questions, or the students ask me questions and we interact from and in all angles.
Do you think the healthcare programs being offered in SBS are relevant and necessary?
Absolutely! Over the years, especially in African countries, the medical field has seen its management come from doctors who have very little, if any, knowledge about the business side of healthcare. This has therefore arose the need to introduce the managers to such courses so that they can be well equipped with the knowledge of how to handle employees, how to maximize on returns without compromising on the quality of healthcare and strategies needed by managers in the healthcare sector. I think its a good thing what SBS has ventured into that will help transform the healthcare sector in this country to greater levels.
Do you think the county governments have what it takes to effectively serve the county residents?
Just moments ago I was at the reception reading the Daily Nation, on how a large number of the counties might not get funding because they have not submitted their budgets. My first thought when I read this was that more effort should go into training the people coming into power so that they can have basic knowledge of what is expected of them.
What are some of the books you have written?
I have written three books, one is actually being used for this course. The other is Managing Business Strategy in Healthcare organizations, and the third one was for doctors and how to deal with situations that are being experienced in the United States. The most recent book i am writing is on Managing Healthcare Compliance in Healthcare Organizations.
How was your experience in SBS?
I have been here for almost two weeks now, teaching the MBA healthcare class. The students are amazing and really thirsty for knowledge that can help them become better managers in the healthcare sector.
The business school is much more than what I expected, it is as professional as any other business school I have been to. Nairobi is beautiful, and so are the people of Nairobi.
What do you do for fun?
I cant really sing but I open my mouth and sound comes out. I however play the guitar. I have done a lot of acting primarily performance art. About nine years ago, I took up a new hobby known as dragon-boat-racing which is a kind of boat race in a dragon shaped boat between twenty people sitting in pairs.
George B. Moseley III, MBA, JD is a Lecturer in Health Law and Management and works in the Department of Health Policy and Management at Harvard School of Public Health