Together We Have Strength
Starting a new job is stressful, but starting a new job in a different part of health care was a kind of stress that I had never experienced. I had many fears and insecurities being new to dialysis, mostly due to the fact I had never worked within a dialysis setting before. However, my team was beyond amazing. They welcomed me and lifted me up by giving me all the tools and knowledge I needed to become a great Patient Care Technician (PCT) ranging from everyday skills, like cannulation, to how to properly mix and make bicarbonate and acid. This warm welcoming from my teammates and their willingness to help teach me what I needed to know, gave me not only the clinical skills needed but, a new kind of kindness and empathy that is required when working with patients, still, I lacked in confidence in my position, my skill and knowledge.
From day one, I saw my team take care of each other just as we took care of every patient and care partner that walked through our doors. And we continue to make sure that they are taken care of, not only physically, but emotionally and mentally as well. There’s no denying the benefits of this holistic way of delivering care. I feel extremely fortunate to have been trained by these leaders and given the opportunity to work with them. I received the best instruction and training I could ask for as a PCT.
I have been given all of the tools to succeed; however, I still had insecurities, until I received an email inviting me to DaVita Academy #194. Academy is a DaVita program where teammates learn from some of the most-inspiring leaders in the DaVita Village and have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the DaVita Way. Teammates are given the opportunity to gain tools to help them move forward in your life – both personally and professionally. This was a true gift for me at this time in my life and career, and I jumped at the chance to attend.
I was excited to learn more about DaVita and meet teammates from different cities who worked in various roles. I, originally expected to hone my clinical skills as a PCT, but when I finally arrived in Denver, CO, I realized that Academy was about something entirely different.
The first day was long but worth it. We learned about the history of DaVita, how others communicate and created our personal credos. I got helpful guidance and had time to reflect on both my personal and professional life while also learning how to confront others when having a difficult conversation. We closed out the first day of content by making our own “We Are Here!” cheer within our different teams (go Red team!) in a friendly competition to concrete the fact that we, as teammates and friends of DaVita, recognize the importance of team and working together to make every day brighter to those around us. The day ended with a mass gathering with games, karaoke and dancing.
The second day was inspiring and filled with content. We discussed addition DaVita resources and programs that are available to teammate and the true meaning of being part of a team. It was a long, information-packed into two days, but I learned what it meant to truly appreciate my team, my skills and my experience. I was reminded that everyone has fears, insecurities and personal weaknesses in their heavy backpacks, but as we work together, we can be each other’s strengths.
I will never forget standing with over 2,000 of my DaVita teammates, now friends, as we graduated from DaVita Academy #194 and watched teammates show their commitment to living the DaVita Way by crossing the bridge – literally and figuratively. I was so inspired, I walked across it to join them.
Throughout the meeting I had the opportunity to talk with teammates that held different roles and were from different regions, but all had the same kind of caring heart. We kept each other company through those two days and they gave me the strength I needed to be comfortable in a different city.
Since Academy, I’ve tried to continue to live the DaVita Way, by focusing on how I can give people life each day by, filling their cup, but also remembering not to completely empty my own.