No sooner had we returned from an uplifting 2 days celebrating Comp Laude, the life well lived of a beloved industry friend Dave DePaolo and all the people that make our work comp industry great, we faced a dramatic election the results of which we will be living with over the next four years.
But first, let’s talk about Comp Laude and may I say it should be required attendance for everyone in this business and here’s why. Comp Laude reminds us that we simply must do a better job of delivering great service to the client–THE INJURED WORKER. At the heart of what we all do every single day in workers’ compensation is the care we deliver to a worker after an injury on the job. I have believed for the most part we do a good job providing appropriate, expedited access to medical care and treatment with return to work paramount. Comp Laude reminded me we are not without our faults…so what can we do?
Comp Laude offered three session tracks, I attended the Advocacy Based Claims Management track hosted by the Alliance of Women In Workers’ Compensation. The first theme was “Collaboration” amongst attendees, ensuring an opportunity to go outside your own network of contacts, share ideas and expand our way of thinking. There were four sessions, the first session focused on the consumer experience driving engagement, using customer satisfaction and KPIs to lead business initiatives, reminding us we are a BENEFIT DELIVERY SYSTEM for an injured worker. As our industry works harder to attract talent and retain talent, we must make what we do in work comp meaningful and purposeful particularly to attract millennials.
The Fireside Chat was my favorite session and likely the most impactful of the entire conference. Three injured workers shared their work comp journeys and I can tell you there wasn’t a dry eye in the house. It reminds us that the injured worker is the person we should be advocating for, ensuring we listen to their voices, appreciate how tough it is to be hurt and wondering if you are going to be able to feed your family. It gives me my “Why,” my passion around why I care so much about this industry, I want to make a difference and have an impact. Many of you reading this article want the same. Please remember when you pick up the phone, return an email, create a program, do UR, provide NCM services…at the heart of what you do every day is your client, your customer, the consumer-THE INJURED WORKER. Treat them the same way you want to be treated.
There were so many other wonderful, poignant moments throughout the conference. Applauding those individuals and businesses that do great work while they received their Comp Laude Award; hearing from a recipient of the wonderful Kids Chance of CA scholarship & awards program; TED-style talks on good news stories; and lots of sharing together on what we can all do collectively to make our work comp system better. There are many many many folks doing the best they can to do what’s right. Perhaps it’s the way I was raised, and the way I’m raising my own daughter, when we treat each other with dignity and respect you can’t help but be a better person and make those around you better too.
Which leads me to the election and its unexpected result, although ultimately not too surprising. We, the consumers, clients, customers are generally very unhappy with our government. We voted into the highest office someone we believe can change the delivery system. Is he perfect? No. Are we perfect? No. But at the end of the day, I must believe that if we continue to treat one another with dignity and respect, we will be better for it. There’s too much at stake for this outcome not to work, which is no different in Workers Compensation.
In the meantime, I have my new Gallagher Bassett “Gentle Bear”, a worthy Ambassador of care & compassion and one I’m hugging tightly today as a friendly reminder of all that’s good in the world.
Look for my follow up Good News articles featuring a few of my new friends from Comp Laude and their successes in work comp!