Aide Games

Shawn Burger… Our Roseville Team Leader sent me the following message…

 “I wanted to catch you up on the Aide Games we had at our staff meeting last week.  We narrowed down 10 or so different “events” to four and had our 5 aides compete.  All of the events were related to aide tasks and each one had points attached.  The first competition was the towel fold/pillow prep.  They had 5 towels to fold and 2 pillows to put cases on.  Points were awarded based on order of finish.  The next event was the towel toss.  Each aide had the chance to throw towels into the towel basket and points were given depending on the location of made attempts.  We also had the kinesiotape cut where they raced to cut a piece of tape 6 inches long and round the edges.  Again, points were given based on order of finish.  The final event was the timer diffuser.  This one really separated the men from the boys.  We placed 5 timers throughout the clinic and set them to go off simultaneously.  We timed how long it took the aides to turn them all off and points were given.  I really wish we had video of this…everyone had a blast.  Winning prize (a pack of gum and $25 Visa gift card) but it was a close race.  We had a great time…pretty funny stuff.  Talk to you later! “

I wanted to thank our Roseville Team!  Often, we miss opportunities in life that are right in front of us.  We look for someone to do it… whatever “it” is or whoever that “somebody” should be… when in reality, we all have opportunities to be doers, add value to our patients and our co workers. What a great place and Team we have in Roseville.

If you see opportunities to add value and fun with your team, do it!  and when you have time, share it with me.

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Where are We?

Recently we have been all over the map… literally to New Orleans, Washington, Los Angeles, Salt Lake City, Dallas, Portland and San Francisco.  Here and there, back N Forth in the past 4 weeks.  During these stops, we have engaged with industry leaders, as well as people like you and I trying to make a positive difference in the lives of people we come in contact with.  We engaged in the annual APTA (That’s the national hob knobbing of Physical Therapists 🙂 to lecturing in SLC, Portland and LA.  This past week, we traveled to SF – CA for the annual IHRSA convention (national sports and rehab equipment trade show).

Through it all, one thing rings clear…The key buzzwords continue to be innovation and efficiency which is code for what technologies will allow us all to see more patients. 

Where and what does this mean for us, is still being debated.  Remember when your Doctor would be able to spend as much time as needed with you?  Now it seems that time is cut to the essential tasks of getting the job done… but what it that “job” and what will it be in the year and years to come?  I don’t have THE answer, but I do know our team is focused on making sure we feel value in our experience. 

Next week, we are moving into a new location in Natomas (by Arco arena) and we look forward to providing great value to our community.  April 1st will be our first day.  Feel free to look us up and stop in to say hello!

Up’s and Downs

Shawn Burger…

This past week we were notified that Blue Shield is reducing their payment effective March 1st for Rehab by approximately 7%.  This same week, it is being reported that Blue Cross is attempting to raise their premiums for health insurance 60% effective July 1st.  My head is shaking… we are already working hard to deal with the 20-25% reduction on a portion of the Medicare payment that went into effect Jan 1st.

Clearly, our healthcare system has some significant issues going forward.  What we pay for insurance is going up up up… what we are getting paid for our services is going down!  What does this all mean? 

Those of us that recognize the opportunity, realize that our way of doing our work, our business model will need to innovate.  We will need to be more efficient.  We will need to look at our “delivery systems.”  Those of us who do will be successful.  I am excited by the opportunities.  Through all the negative news, come opportunities for all of us to work for solutions. 

In the past 6 months alone, our company has grown to nearly 400 team members… we have added multiple new SNF teams in Southern California and Fort Bragg in Northern Ca.  We are expanding our Outpatient services in Natomas and are looking for an opportunity in the Bay Area.  Thank you for your efforts.

Mission Statement

Shawn Burger

This past week, each of our outpatient clinics leaders gathered together for what has become an annual leadership day.  A full day starting with breakfast, organizational updates, HR updates, lunch and an afternoon of planning for the New Year.  I want to thank each of our 12 team leaders in Outpatient who took the efforts to add value to the team.  I also want to thank the clinic teams who worked and held down the “fort” last Thursday when all of them were out of the office. 🙂 One of the key items we discussed was a refocus of our mission statement.  Our long standing mission statement reads   “We proudly acknowledge we are in business to make a positive difference in the lives of our patients, our employees and the community at large.”  In focusing our efforts we defined our mission statement a bit further to read:

We proudly acknowledge we are in business to provide rehabilitation expertise and valued service in the lives of our families, patients and community at large.”

A slight change, but a significant change we believe will help guide us for 2011 and beyond.   As we add expertise and valued service, we head into 2011 with a focus on: Safety, Courtesy, Aesthetics, Valued Service, Delivery Systems and Innovation

 As a team we have a lot to look forward to this year.  There are great opportunities.  Please consider the pillars above in your service.  Please consider these in working with and making solutions possible with your team.  No ONE can do it all…  each of us has an opportunity to look, and offer solutions.

Goals and New Years Resolutions

Shawn Burger…

 “I am giving up red meat!” “I am only drinking water.” Those are just two resolutions I overheard this week here at the Folsom clinic. What is your “New Year’s resolution?” Do you have one? I heard recently that the average resolution is given up on by January 11th and knowing myself pretty good, I am a bit skeptical that I should tell others what mine is or the many that crossed my mind… but then I came across some ideas recently while reading that encouraged me to reset my goals and have a process in doing so.

Goals Are A Compass. People who don’t make goals usually don’t get anywhere, because they don’t know where they are going. Goals Make You Unique. A Harvard study found that the 3% of students who write down goals for their life accomplish more than the 97% who do not. Which group would you rather be in? It’s been said that life is less than 20% knowledge and 80% behavior. I like that… it gives me hope knowing that attitude, persistence and action can win over knowledge alone.

Zig Zigler, the famous speaker talks about the importance of being balanced, of setting goals pertaining to your “wheel of life.” He suggests setting goals for 7 key areas that include your Career, Financial, Spiritual, Physical, Family, Intellectual and Social. I really like that. But how do I go about doing that? I found 5 key points and wanted to share them with you: First, be specific. When setting goals, be specific in what you want to achieve. Vagueness will only cause you to feel overwhelmed, and you will just give up. Second, make your goals measureable. In order to know if you achieved the goal, it must be measurable. For example, if you want to lose weight, don’t simply write down “lose weight” as a goal. How much weight do you want to lose? Or don’t just write “spend more time with family.” How much time do you want to spend with your family every night? Three, Are they your goals? Only you can set your own goals. If your spouse, co-worker or friend sets a goal for you, you’re not going to achieve it. Taking ownership will give you more incentive to meet your goal. Fourth, Set a time limit. Setting a time frame will help you set realistic goals. For example, if you want to save more money, list how much money a month you want to put into your savings account. And five, Put them in writing. Putting your goals in writing will make you much more likely to achieve them. Write down your goals and review them often. This will give you motivation to make them a reality.

This past week, a co-worker and I shared our 7 key area goals with each other and found strength in encouraging one another. It’s my hope that 2011 will be a great year for you, your family, your efforts, our patients and the communities we serve.

Another Year

Shawn Burger …

Well we made it another year.  I remember in late 1999 working up in Auburn in our outpatient clinic watching people work on the computers of the day in preparation for Y2K.  We spent many dollars making sure our computers wouldn’t fail…  In retrospect, I bet we wasted a lot of time and energy. 

And here we are, a decade later with 2011 almost a reality.  Wow!  Where does it go?  I truly hope each of you takes a moment to catch your breath and appreciate the great opportunities in life.  We are so thankful that each day many of you, our teams are here making the efforts to brighten the days of others.  Thank you so much!

Smell the Daisies

Shawn Burger

Have you ever noticed sometimes that patients can be a bit down?  In some cases this is a true understatement.  Most of us have seen this… the patient slouched over in their wheelchair in the hall.  Nurses walking by, visitors, people in suits, all going from one point to another; all doing their “job.”   I have walked hallways, glimpsing through the open doorways to see patients, people lying in bed, disoriented, weak, without purpose.  We even have a diagnosis for it… “Failure to thrive.”  I have even seen it in our Outpatient clinics… the patient sitting slouched in the lobby, waiting for their appointment, frustrated, in pain, frustrated that they are even there.  You can even see it in their eyes, “what happened to me?  Back in the day I was …”

I was reminded of this thought recently in a meeting.  It was asked “what” our purpose was?  “why” do we do what we do?  These are typical questions by group leaders to engage discussion… but I find that most of us simply roll our eyes because we have heard the same things over and over through the years.  That is we “all” care about the patient.  We “all” want to make a positive difference.  After awhile were not sure what it means?

 Then the group leader did something a bit different…  She stood at the front of the room with a daisy and exclaimed that this “daisy” represented our lives.  Our patients’ lives.  She held the “daisy” up for all to see.  Then she pulled a pedal from the flower and said this was our “youth” and let it fall to the table…  She then pulled another pedal and said this was our college life and we watched it fall to the table… another pedal pulled and said this maybe our time with our kids, and we watched it fall to the table… pedal after pedal was pulled.  Each representing a part of our lives, our family, our world, and our health, each being plucked and with each I watched them fall to the table.  When she was done she held that “daisy” up for each of us to see… there was a single pedal remaining.  Can you imagine why our patients we serve feel the way they do?   It’s no wonder that some patients give up, loose hope, purpose for trying any longer.  Do you think they really want to do that “exercise?”

As we go through our days… it’s not just the “T’s” and “I’s” that are important.  Anybody can hit a RUGs level; see a patient, document and bill…  There’s a half million people in the US alone that do what we do… 

 But I truly believe we do it better!  We do it with a common purpose!   We can stop and catch our breath, in so doing, teach others how to do the same and appreciate the opportunities that are given to us to stop and smell the “daisies”

Happy Thanksgiving!

Shawn Burger… As I sit at my desk today looking out the window, I appreciate the fresh air, delta breeze and beautiful fall colors.  As my grandmother used to say to Eric and me growing up in Northern Wisconsin… “It’s a beautiful day in the Northwood’s.”

Thanksgiving holds a special place in my heart.  It is without a doubt my favorite holiday.  For the Burger’s, we will gather with between 40-60 family members and enjoy time, memories, unique food (Veggie Turkey :)) and thankfulness for opportunities.

We truly are blessed and each of you is a part of a bigger picture, our Burger Family here at work.  I recognize that in some cases we share time, efforts and memories on a frequent basis.  For some of us living and working in outer reaches of California, we may only connect here or there, an email or two or hopefully a bit more.  These past 2 weeks many of us gathered together in shared experiences by going to a Sacramento Kings game.   Many also came to our all staff meeting.  Hearing from Carol on the state of life and business was encouraging and gives hope for the future!

 As always, thank you for your unique talents and efforts.  Each of us adds value to our team.  Best wishes for a Great Family Thanksgiving….

Five Secrets

Shawn Burger…

http://www.bkconnection.com/thefivesecrets/five%20secrets.swf

This past week my daughter turned seven.  Not sure how that happened… that is where did the time go?  I thought about calling our friend and colleague Jerry Starkey.   I have always admired Jerry, a PT who owned “THE” practice in Roseville for over 30 years and has been part of our Burger Family for the past 8.  Jerry has 2 adult daughters separated by 18 months.  Like him, my daughters are separated by 18 months so I have tried over the years to listen and take tidbits of advice.  Some of Jerry’s words are classic!  That is, they could be used to write a self help book for life…  When I hear that his daughters fought, I am relieved that my daughters must have come from the same planet.  When I hear that his daughters have grown up to value family and success in life, I am encouraged that those opportunities are available for my daughters…But some of my learning has not been through words, but observing the pride of family that Jerry reflects in his own life. 

 I have been sharing recently my thoughts on life, our values and purpose… Many of you, our team members have called and emailed me with suggestions for books, team events, and solutions to systems, etc…  Thank you!  Each idea or tidbit of wisdom adds to our team.   One such item sent to me was a web link entitled “The Five Secrets of Life.”  When I looked at this short video, it reminded me of my times with Jerry… and the wisdoms he has so graciously shared with me.

Hope you enjoy!

“one of those days”

Shawn Burger…

Have you ever had “one of those days?” 

 Instinctively we quickly recall that day last week or month that was different.  The day we felt pressure, stress, the focal point of someone else.  Why me?  Why today? TGIF right?

 Just thinking of one of those days recalls emotions out of the ordinary.  Were taught in school about the three F’s of Fear, Flight and Fight, and we can all recall the day(s) those emotions swell up inside us. 

 But did your day last week include the F for “Family?”

 My day last week involved treating and visiting with one of my patients named “Bart.” (Yes, I changed the name for HIPPA)  I have known Bart, let me say have treated Bart on and off through the past 5 years or so.   Bart is in his late 80’s and his body is shutting down.  2 total knee replacements, hip surgery, back injections underlying disk disease, joint disease and neurology issues, Parkinson’s, etc…  Bart has shared with me over the years his lack of family, his lack of close friends still alive, and his lack of purpose when his body does not allow him to do.  Last week Bart came back in to “tune up” and help him with his walking.  When we got back into a treatment room and we began visiting…  Bart slowed his speech, looked me in the eye and told me that he was “scarred to die.” Knowing that faith is important in my family, he mentioned that he was not a man of faith, but thankful that he chose a life of knowing right from wrong.  Bart shared with me his gratitude to my family through the years…  Bart and I shared a family moment.

 How many of our days can you reflect back on and say are “family” moments?  We are quick to recall the three F’s…  We know that many of our team members especially in Skilled Nursing are feeling some of those Fs.  We know that change can be stressful.  We know that other people are also suffering from the three Fs and may take out their frustrations on us.  We may take out our frustrations on others…. 

 Let us remind ourselves that we are a family.   We share a family bond that differs from other organizations.  Last week one of our team members in Folsom told me that she is thankful for the book Fish as it reminded her of our Folsom Team,  that her work day is fun!  I was informed that one of our SNF teams “best day of the month” was taking time out of the day to take a “family” picture for our holiday card contest.  That is awesome!