Ewa J. Kleczyk, PhD: A Global Champion for Women in Healthcare Leadership

Iconic Business Women to Follow in 2023

From her early days in the industry to her current role as Senior Vice President of Commercial Analytics & Data Curation at Target RWE, Dr Ewa J. Kleczyk has developed innovative solutions and high-performing teams. Her commitment to making a positive impact is seen in her dedication to mentoring and supporting the next generation of women leaders in the healthcare industry.

Dr Ewa J. Kleczyk is a highly respected figure in the healthcare industry, with nearly two decades of experience under her belt. Currently serving as Senior Vice President of Commercial Analytics & Data Curation at Target RWE, Dr Kleczyk leads the company in providing best-in-class real-world data (RWD) solutions for the healthcare industry, which are utilised throughout the drug development and commercialisation process. Before this role, she was a Vice President of Advanced and Custom Analytics at Symphony Health, ICON, plc, where she oversaw commercial analytics and and data operations as well as privacy compliance function.

Throughout her impressive career, Dr Kleczyk has consistently demonstrated her expertise in analytics and operations, establishing herself as a leader in the field with a proven track record of building high-performing teams and delivering innovative solutions. In addition to her professional accomplishments, Dr Kleczyk is a highly sought-after conference speaker, presenting at various leading industry events, including the Pharmaceutical Marketing Sciences Association, HIMSS, DTC National, CDM Media, and the Conference for Business and Economics at Harvard University, among others. She has also published extensively in academic and industry journals and has contributed chapters to several academic books, in addition to serving as a board member for various peer-reviewed publications.

In addition to her professional accomplishments, Dr Kleczyk is a strong advocate for mentoring and supporting the next generation of women leaders in the healthcare industry. She has received numerous leadership awards, including the Healthcare Businesswomen Association’s “Rising Star” and “Luminary” recognitions. In 2022, she was a finalist for the Women in IT Awards in the “Contribution of the Year” category and was also recognised by the WomenTech organisation for her mentoring initiatives.

Outside of her career, Dr Kleczyk is actively involved in her community. Along with her husband, James Strout, she serves on the Community Cancer Council for the Northern Light Health Network in Bangor, Maine, providing advocacy for cancer patients. She is also a graduate faculty member in the School of Economics at the University of Maine, where she established a scholarship for graduate students in the field of economics. In addition, Dr Kleczyk chairs the College Advisory Board for the College of Natural Sciences, Forestry, and Agriculture, working closely with the Dean and faculty to develop programs and degrees that support the growing Maine and Northeast economies.

She holds a Doctorate Degree in Agricultural & Applied Economics from Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA, an MS in Resource Economics and Policy and a BA in Economics with a Minor in Mathematics from the University of Maine in Orono, Maine.

Redefining New Standards of Success.

For Dr Kleczyk, success is finding satisfaction and purpose in her work while continuously striving for personal growth and development. She believes success is about individual achievement and building a positive and high-performing company culture where all employees can grow and contribute. In terms of her career, success is defined as meeting the company’s goals and objectives, improving operational efficiency and providing valuable insights to clients. It also involves helping and inspiring others, especially young women in the workforce, to grow and pursue their professional goals.

She has prioritised mentoring and advocating for women in the healthcare industry and has been recognised for her consistent leadership efforts with various awards and accolades. She firmly believes that success includes giving back to the community. She is involved in various volunteer and community service efforts, including serving on the Community Cancer Council for the Northern Light Health Network and establishing an academic scholarship at the University of Maine.

In addition to her professional pursuits, she deeply values the importance of finding balance in her personal life and feeling content with where she is at any given moment. Ultimately, Dr Kleczyk defines success as doing what she loves, learning daily, inspiring others, and positively impacting her community.

Extraordinary Journey of Dr Kleczyk

Dr Kleczyk’s journey as an analytics and operations leader in the healthcare industry has been challenging due to the male-dominated nature of the field and the lack of women in executive leadership positions. Recently, Dr Kleczyk attended an industry conference where she was one of only three women speakers among a total of 30, highlighting the barriers that still exist for women in these roles. To navigate these complexities and create her brand, Dr Kleczyk takes the initiative and embraces new opportunities, even if the results take time.

Additionally, she has found it essential to have mentors who challenge her and offer guidance. She believes mentors can show you other opportunities, ideas, and positions you could take and even push you to experience the other side of the organisation, which is very important to one’s professional journey. Lastly, having a supportive spouse and family has been crucial for Dr Kleczyk’s success. In her own words, “Behind every successful woman is a supportive spouse, partner, and family member, who believes in you, and supports you, no matter what happens.”

Transforming obstacles into milestones

Dr Kleczyk has faced several challenges throughout her professional journey, including self-doubt and a lack of trust in her capabilities to advance to the next level. She recognised this is a common roadblock for many women (and men) as they struggle in their professional and personal lives. However, Dr Kleczyk has learned to overcome such obstacles by taking the initiative and creating opportunities when necessary.

Dr Kleczyk opines that sometimes the road to advancement is blocked by external circumstances and that it may be necessary to pivot or change direction to move forward. However, she believes that being open to new possibilities and actively supporting her career is key to standing out and advancing in the long term.

During her professional journey, Dr Kleczyk has experienced several challenges, including self-doubt and a lack of trust in her ability to move to the next level. She recognised this is a common roadblock for many women (and men) as they struggle in their professional and personal lives. However, Dr Kleczyk has learned to overcome such obstacles by taking the initiative and creating opportunities when necessary. She has also known that sometimes external circumstances can block the path to advancement, and in these cases, it may be required to pivot or change direction to move forward.

A former leader advised Dr Kleczyk to create her table and convince others to join when there seemed no opportunity to advance. Dr Kleczyk actively thinks about supporting the organisation in ways that set them apart and make them relevant. She believes that pivoting and changing direction is key to standing out and advancing in the long term. Per another leader’s advice, she trusts that no one will better support her career than herself. This encouraged her to be open to new possibilities and actively support her career. She believes it is essential to be honest, and not feel obligated to follow usual standards to achieve success.

Rising to challenges at Target RWE

Target RWE is a company that has been at the forefront of generating and delivering real-world evidence to support pharmaceutical, life sciences, and healthcare partners in need of access to high-quality data and advanced analytics. Founded in 2015, Target RWE utilises advanced analytics and real-world data (RWD) to generate insights that help improve healthcare decision-making. It offers a comprehensive solution that brings together key opinion leaders, patients, and other stakeholders in a collaborative community. Their team of RWE experts strive to deliver the best solutions for their partners’ needs.

The innovative solutions provided by the team of RWE have been used to support new drug development, address regulatory requirements, and assess decision-making processes for R&D strategies.

As a seasoned leader in the healthcare industry, Dr Kleczyk understands the importance of utilising top-quality data to support pharmaceutical and healthcare partners in making informed decisions. Dr Kleczyk oversees data curation and management, clinical operations, and insights generation as head of the Analytics and Data Operations group.

In the past, Dr Kleczyk has been responsible for creating highly-effective teams that attract top talent and developing new leaders within those teams. As a result, many individuals who have worked under Dr Kleczyk’s leadership have gone on to hold executive positions and lead their groups in analytics and operations. It is a source of pride for Dr Kleczyk to see these individuals thrive and succeed.

Under her leadership at Target RWE, the team is working to enhance its capabilities and performance, foster a culture of change and innovation, and provide opportunities for professional development and career growth. Building a high-performing team is a challenging yet rewarding aspect of her job, as it allows the company to achieve its mission of improving lives through real-world evidence.

Global Impact of Women Leaders

According to a 2022 survey by McKinsey, in partnership with LeanIn.org, women are still significantly underrepresented in Executive leadership positions in corporate America. The Women in the Workplace 2022 report shows that only one in four C-suite leaders is a woman, and only one in twenty is a woman of colour.

Additionally, the report found that while women are just as ambitious as men, they leave their companies at higher rates, especially in leadership roles. Dr Kleczyk believes this trend could negatively affect businesses unless action is taken to address it.

It is, therefore, crucial for current female leaders to demonstrate to the next generation of women leaders what is possible and how to navigate the challenges of corporate America. This requires working with male colleagues to change the culture and create environments where women can be authentic, succeed in their positions, and receive recognition for their achievements. It can be difficult for many female leaders to hear that more and more women opt not to pursue leadership roles due to challenging cultural factors.

However, for Dr Kleczyk, this presents an opportunity for female leaders to build new executive tables and create seats in which women can drive success and offer their authentic selves, which is essential for the future to ensure that the gap between male and female representation in leadership positions is not widening. This is especially important for the benefit of future generations so that our daughters, nieces, and sisters can aspire to and achieve leadership positions. By taking action now, we can help to narrow the gap and create a more inclusive and equitable corporate environment.

Dealing with rising competition in the industry, Dr Kleczyk understands that staying informed and up-to-date on industry developments is crucial for success in leadership roles. In addition, she believes that ongoing learning, networking, and professional development are essential for success in the healthcare and analytics industry.

To achieve this, Dr Kleczyk makes time for research, attends conferences and industry events, and actively engages in self-learning through courses and industry publications. She knows that committing to these activities is essential for staying competitive and driving the company’s success.

A Glimpse at Dr Ewa J. Kleczyk’s Day at Work

A perseverant individual at heart, Dr Kleczyk is dedicated to leading and improving the Analytics and Data Operations group at Target RWE. In this role, she advises on and plans new ways to enhance operational efficiency, develops new ways of analysing data, provides insights and works to strengthen the relationships with data providers and vendors.

Innovation, efficiency, and ingenuity are vital to giving healthcare data insights that can improve patient access to care, speed up diagnostic processes, and optimise treatment options. Dr Kleczyk understands the importance of high-quality, timely data availability in driving medical and clinical progress and is dedicated to ensuring that the company’s operations are constantly evolving and improving.

She works closely with internal stakeholders from other departments to ensure that improvements are made in sync with their activities. To summarise, Dr Ewa J. Kleczyk’s usual day work involves her being committed to driving medical and clinical progress through quality data and innovative approaches to analysis.

On self-motivation and work-life balance, Dr Kleczyk firmly believes in maintaining a good work-life balance but recognises that it can be difficult for many professionals. Yet, despite the challenges, she is driven by her desire to solve complex problems and support her team, clients, healthcare experts and other related stakeholders. In addition, she is motivated by the knowledge that her work is contributing to her company’s success and the opportunity to see her employees grow and develop in their careers.

Outside of work, Dr Kleczyk is involved in various engagements that allow her to give back to her community, including serving on the Community Cancer Council for the Northern Light Health Network and the College Advisory Board for the College of Natural Sciences, Forestry, and Agriculture. These opportunities allow her to positively impact clinical research and college education, thus helping her be driven by the desire to leave the world a better place and make a difference in someone’s life.

Advice to upcoming Global Women Leaders

Dr Kleczyk’s a seasoned professional with a wealth of experience in the healthcare industry. Throughout her career, she has consistently demonstrated her ability to navigate the complexities of corporate America, continuously rising through the ranks to take on leadership positions and drive progress within her organisation.

As Dr Kleczyk has progressed in her career, she has found it increasingly difficult to determine the direction of her next professional opportunity due to the abundance of exciting options available. However, rather than becoming overwhelmed by this abundance, she has learned the value of flexibility and the ability to pivot to achieve her career goals.

As she moves forward in her professional journey, Dr Kleczyk is committed to taking on more responsibility and growing her skillset to prepare herself for future positions and opportunities. In the later stages of her career, she hopes to use her experience to support local organisations as a board member, helping to provide direction and assist with fundraising and research efforts. In addition, Dr Kleczyk is eager to serve as a role model for young women who aspire to leadership positions, encouraging them to break through glass ceilings and achieve new levels of success.

Dr Ewa Kleczyk’s journey has not always been easy, but it has been worth it. She has overcome numerous obstacles and setbacks to get to where she is today, and she is a testament to the power of hard work and determination. Dr Ewa J. Kleczyk is an invaluable asset to Target RWE and a true leader in data analytics.