Friday, July 27, 2012

What's Your Passion?

What are you passionate about?  This question was purposed to me a few weeks ago.  At that particular time, it was hard for me to put into words or articulate the answer, even though I really knew my passion.  As a matter of fact, I’ve often purposed this question to others in the past.  When the question boomeranged back, I was caught off guard.  I had not thought about it in many years.  My passion was the reason that I chose my current profession.  It makes me who I am as an individual and encompasses all the things that I stand for. 

From as early as I can remember, I’ve always known that I would become a public servant in some sense, no matter what career choice I decided.  I would chose this route whether it was connected to my work or totally separate.  It was and still is my passion.  Even though I’ve seriously considered it in the past, I’m not referring to the traditional definition of public servant, such as working in the public sector, government agency, elected or appointed position.  My emphasis is based on a nontraditional definition.  I have fully embraced the obligation and responsibility to advocate and be the voice for all people, regardless of differences, economic or social status.  This includes being a platform and venue for those underrepresented, the voice of the voiceless and advocating for those not able to advocate for themselves.  I believe that there are certain unalienable rights that are afforded to all people, but the ideal expands well beyond that notion.  I have embraced the ideology on simple and basic human relation principles. 
  • Accepting differences – people are not the same and one group is not better than the other, just different.
  • Recognizing similarities – people are similar in many ways
  • Respecting - and valuing all people for their contributions regardless of differences, social or economic status
  • Sensitivity – being sensitive to differences.  Recognizing that some things could be considered offensive to others
  • Inclusion – representing all people Vs targeted groups or individuals
  • Fair and just treatment – a bipartisan process whereas all parties have a voice and all sides have been considered
  • Empathy – Being able to empathize and see things from another point of view
  • Rationale – Being able to apply logical reasons and principles to decisions

The world in which we live in is constantly changing.  The population is shifting and becoming more diverse than ever before.  We can no longer think and behave in isolation.  The world is truly global and encompasses more than our visual surroundings.  We have to embrace globalization in every aspect.  Globalization brings more diversity, different views on life, religion, culture, customs, norms, and many other differences.  I personally view human relations in a hierarchical order:

1) Ethical and moral responsibility– Highest level, far exceeding anything else
2) Mission and Goals – Guiding direction for the organization
3) Policies and procedures – Consistent with the mission/goals and helps us to achieve them  
4) Legal/legislative – required by law, legislation, regulatory, etc.

If you are wondering why legal/legislative is at the bottom on the order; it is because it only represents the minimum requirement.  We can do so much more.  The bottom line is that everyone wants to feel valued.  That’s the commonality in all of us.  My passion is quite simple.  It revolves around spiriting positive relations to all people and helping individuals reach their full potential.  I’ve never considered it a job, but a responsibility.  It is the reason that I remain vigilant and committed in my efforts. 

I will end this blog with the same question that I started; what are you passionate about?  I’d love to hear your story.

Joseph Conrod Sr. SPHR  

Monday, July 2, 2012

Your "A" Game

I recently watched the NBA basketball finals.  Even though only one team will triumph as the winner, the fans expect nothing less than each member of the team to bring their "A" Game to each and every game.  Although, I love all sports in general, high-energy sports seem to ignite my interest.  It requires a high level of physical and mental ability.  In order to compete in high-energy sports, one would need an extreme level of energy, passion and a level of commitment beyond words.  It requires practice and a training regiment far beyond what normal spectators can visually comprehend.  Most sports are about teamwork and not only to coexist but also to sync together to achieve one common purpose.  

While watching the playoffs, I had an epiphany.  What if every employee in your organization brought his or her "A" Game to work every day?  Can you imagine the high level of productivity and extreme outcomes that could be achieved?  Outcomes could be measured at multiple standard deviations beyond the norm, or the average day on steroids!  What if “exceptional” becomes the new norm and each of us is expected to perform at that level.  If your job is performing life saving procedures, sterilizing equipment, mixing medicine, performing laboratory tests, caring for patients, providing information technology, providing nutrition to patients, or making sure that the facility is clean and orderly; every job is important and contributes to the mission of the organization.  Each of our roles sync and contributes to a team environment with one common purpose.  

This reminds me of just a few exceptional people who bring their "A" Game to work each and every day and go well beyond what is expected.  It reminds me of the physical therapist that postponed her honeymoon to serve a patient, the registered nurse that came in on her day off to see her patient leave the hospital after a lengthy stay, the registrar that gave encouraging words to a customer throughout her child's visit, the environmental service worker that went through the trash dumpster to help find a customer's lost wallet, and the information technology (IT) worker that performed a life saving medical procedure in a parking lot at an out patient care center.  All are above and beyond expectations.  Their acts are truly exceptional!

In health care miracles continue to happen, lives are enriched, dire odds are turned upside down, negatives are changed to positives, wounds are healed, emotions overflow, tears of pain, sadness and joy are shed, love is expressed, prayers are answered, and lives are spared.  Each new day bring challenges and opportunities.  Each day affords us another opportunity to excel to greater heights…

~ Joseph Conrod Sr. SPHR   

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