|After a Successful Delivery!|
This week my relatively petite wife gave birth to our son, André, a healthy 10 pound 3 ounce baby in the Washington, DC area. It was an anticipated moment preceded by ample planning and childbirth classes. When labor began, we thought we knew the outcome and general timing. As it turns out, my wife labored for 36 hours, much longer than most impending childbirths, 24 of those hours in the Shady Grove Adventist Hospital in Rockville, MD.
The Dr.’s note summarized the complications as “unusually large fetus causing disproportion in pregnancy.” My wife’s birth plan had outlined beforehand the importance of a natural birth and the hospital staff honored us with stellar support throughout the entire process. In the end, the only alternative possible was a C-Section to protect both baby and mother.
I don’t know if the faith based principles of the Adventist Hospital had everything to do with the incredible care the staff bestowed or if it was superb leadership and management (coincidentally, the hospital’s mission statement is shown on every computer screensaver in the building); maybe it was a combination of the two. The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is the little “extra;” this hospital team was EXTRAordinary!
The care that individuals with birth names such as Thu, Gerald, Michelle, Anders, Radhika, Hirut, Amanda, Werknesh, Cynthia, Sylvia, Constantine or Elizabeth gave us was attentive and very professional. Why did we get such fantastic personal care in a profit-based enterprise where some might think conservative care is the norm? Why did we have nurses staying with us throughout the labor process? Why did they check in so often before, during and after to make sure we were OK fulfilling the most menial of requests with a generous smile?
The cadre of personnel assigned to this birth, and the three days of attention that followed, came from all over the world: Columbia, Ethiopia, Greece, India, Nigeria, Philippines, San Salvador and Vietnam to name a few countries and from states across the US. They were a synchronized team. The behind-the-scenes orchestration of each successive specialist visit was comforting, and reassuring. Every shift communicated with their counterparts. There was no need to repeat where we were at that moment in time, with any staff member. The needs, follow-up and verification of results were seamless from one staff person to another as they each studied our roster before entering the room. Ironically, it was a hospital team we had entrusted to help deliver our new family addition but in the end we were a symbiotic team of both patient and specialists.
The inherent beauty of total strangers coming together from such far-away places, with a common purpose to help another set of strangers deliver a baby with such care, is something to behold. The Baby Boomers, Generation X and Millennial generations all had their role to play in orchestrating emerging life. Thirty years of tenure was just as important as the relatively new team members’ contributions. Our faith leaning was immaterial. An important job, with a human touch, was all that mattered.
Unfounded fears of the “other” culture or the “different-than-I-look” person are often misguided misunderstandings. Humanity is a “You & I” endeavor. On behalf of my wife, son and family I want to extend tremendous accolades to the management team at the hospital for the pre-planning that goes into making a well run facility, the vision and mission expectations that the Board has set, the first-rate training evident in the results and the caliber of people they have brought together. One can sense palpable leadership with a very definite human touch. Altogether, we witnessed beautiful people from across the globe, all within the confines of a brick-and-mortar building, helping make OUR world a better place!
Enrique Ruiz, CM, CDE, MBA, PgMP (Proud Dad to 6 children) www.AmericasDiversityLeader.com
Enrique ‘Rick’ Ruiz, is President of PositivePsyche.Biz Corp, a Washington DC based consulting and training firm (www.AmericasDiversityLeader.com). He is an accomplished Program Manager that has led large scale IT operations over the past decade involving teams up to 15,000. His credits involve Census Operations in the UK, Canada and the United States plus military/commercial manufacturing (including a maquiladora in Mexico).
He serves on the Society for Diversity board and the worldwide Institute for Certified Professional Managers (ICPM) Board of Regents. He is the author of four books speaking regularly on Diversity Management and Leadership Building skills. Follow Rick on Twitter @RuizSpeaks