Employee’s Unfaltering Responsiveness: The Art of Adaptation

jim-bowerHumans resist change. There’s no way around it – it’s just how we’re wired. If you think about it, it’s so easy to get up in the morning with the same routine and same expectations for how your day will play out. No anxiety. No uncertainty. Why venture into uncharted territory when you can be comfortable? Well, despite me being one of the guilty ones to always enjoy a nice routine, I’ve found there are actually many reasons why it’s beneficial to seek change.

First, change means adventure. Going through the same motions every single day definitely becomes mundane after a while. How will you make the most of life if you don’t take risks? Second, change equals confidence. To undergo and accept change in your life, that shows you are confident in your current state and are secure enough to take on something new. Lastly, change enables growth. Whether personally or in business, growth is an essential part of advancement, knowledge, and expansion.

One of the favorite pieces of advice I’ve ever received is to “do things that make you uncomfortable.” Sure, no one wants to be intentionally uneasy about their future, but sometimes you have to hit bumps in the road to get back up and reach your full potential.

With that said, one member of our team definitely knows a thing or two about change within the corporate world, and especially the healthcare field. With so many new medicines, methods, forms of care, and the frequent introduction fresh technology, healthcare is a field where you have to learn to adapt. For RN Jim Bower, who has worked for what is now AHN H@H for 21 years, he has become an expert on adaptation.

Jim started his nursing career at West Penn Hospital 25 years ago working in various areas and disciplines within the hospital. After four years there, he switched over to home health and never looked back. For the past 21 years, Jim has watched Allegheny Health Network evolve into what it is today.

“With our company growing, there has always been changes and there always will be changes,” Jim said. “It’s a temporary inconvenience for permanent growth.”

Coming from an RN who had to use two different computers during the transition period of Celtic and AHN H@H’s joint venture, Jim has had a positive outlook every step of the way. Just as he said, there’s no stopping the temporary inconvenience of change, but what you gain from undergoing change is ultimately worth it.

“I think nurses in general don’t like big changes,” Jim said. “You just have to be real with people and emphasize that we are a growing company. There’s a point we’re trying to get to and we will get there eventually.”

While these changes might affect the way clinicians support and treat the patient medically, Jim always sticks to his personal core values to keep him grounded, specifically always putting the patient first. What he fell in love in home health was the one on one time with the patient, and having the opportunity to educate. Working in a space that enables you create that laid-back, relaxed environment allows you to sensitively explain what is occurring in all steps of care for the patient.

“There will always be good days and bad days; it’s the nature of the beast.” Jim said. “Homecare [requires you] to always be on the job. When you see your last patient, you’re not just done for the day. Sometimes you don’t know when you’ll have your own down time, so it requires dedication for the patient.”

Isn’t that the ultimate goal of any healthcare company – to provide amazing service to ill human beings that need it most? Jim attributes his and the company’s success to being able to work in a cohesive team aiming for the same goal of trying to make the patient well. In order to do so, change, while not always welcome, is required. Change brings upon us a temporary inconvenience to reach that desired permanent improvement. And that’s the beauty of life.

Thanks, Jim, for sharing your knowledge on change and adaptation while going above and beyond in service to your patients every day.


Blog post by Troy Abbott – Assistant to Director of Strategic Projects for the CEO



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