Saturday, May 9, 2009

Accolades, Parties, Photo shoots and a Parking Space

The hospital where I work operates on four values that are written in to their mission statement. These values are excellence, dignity, service and justice. These values are not just terms, but real ideas that the management and staff try to attain to as we give care. Theses values were important to our founding sisters as well as in today's times. It is what sets St. Joseph apart from other hospitals and makes us special. It is a place with character and not just a place that is focused on the bottom line or money.
Each year the hospital recognizes staff, management, MD's, nurses, etc. as we go about trying to attain to these values. We can nominate those that we work with for a "values in action" award. There are certain criteria and wording that is used and it is system wide (all of the hospitals within the system give out the awards each year). It is a really big thing - to not only be awarded one of these awards but to just be nominated. To have one of your peers think that you are worthy enough to write up a paper about you. To think that someone thinks that you live the values and give good care. These nominations then go to a committee that actually reads every single one and then picks someone to honor for the year with the award. Each hospital within the system honors someone in all four categories. These people, and their stories then go before the whole system and a system winner is chosen. Over the past couple of years I have tried to be better at nominating other people - to recognize their achievements and to give praise when praise is do. I, too, have been nominated in the past for these awards and the hospital recognizes you with a certificate and it goes in your employee file. It feels really good to think that you could possibly live up to these values.
Well, this year I was chosen as the Dignity award winner for our hospital. To say that I was shocked when I got the phone call from our CEO is putting it mildly. I did not even know that I was nominated, or in the running for such a prestigious award. I was sort of taken aback and a little embarrassed for I hate attention to be placed on me...I am a good attention giver not getter! Along with the appointment of the award and all of the recognition that comes with that, we have our photo hanging in the lobby for a year (hence a couple of photo shoots), we get to do an interview with our PR rep, we get presented this huge award and we get a free, front door parking space for a year. (and NO...I am not selling my spot to all of you askers out there....that certainly wouldn't be a very dignified thing to do :) It is truly a great honor and humbling all at the same time. I think I am still in a little bit of shock and trying to figure out what all of this means.
I thought I'd post what the nomination committee looks for in its selection process. This will help me to stay focused on what the award means and to examine myself to see if I fit that picture. So..

"We respect each person as an inherently valuable member of the human community and as a unique expression of life"
This award is given to an individual who demonstrates dignity in interactions. The dignity award winner consistently:
  • uses open, honest and respectful communication during all interactions
  • listens to, acknowledges and shows respect for all people with their differing viewpoints and ways of interpreting the world.
  • creates and promotes positive working relationships that foster a healthy and effective work environment
  • recognizes and celebrates the unique contributions of all co-workers.

Do I do that?? I would certainly hope that I attempt to treat people like that. Yesterday we did do some of our own celebrating...we had a party at work, thrown by my co-workers, yummy food, cake, gifts and Kim made me a sash that I had to wear even while I was giving patient care! It was a great day and I felt so special. My friends are the best!! And I wouldn't trade them for anything. Oh and thanks to whomever nominated me!

Deb Beno and I:

Thanks Kim for the sash!