Thursday, January 15, 2015

Imagine!'s Leadership Development Program Update for January

Pictured from left to right are: Mason Turnage, who works for Imagine!’s CORE/Labor Source department; Sarah Baglee, who works for Imagine!’s Early Intervention department; Emily Pitt, who works for Imagine!’s Innovations department; Elena Ciaravino, who works for Imagine!’s Out & About department; Cassie Rogers, who works for Imagine!’s CORE/Labor Source department; and Meagan Rountree, who works for Imagine!’s Case Management department.

December has been a busy month for the Leadership Development Group. Members of the group attended the Joint Budget Committee Briefings and Hearings at the Capitol in Denver. This month we will begin meeting and assigning task towards the development of our two case studies we will be working on for the next six months. We have also concluded reading our first book, “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team,” by Patrick Lencioni. This month also held some fun and joy for the group, as we attended holiday parties, including the Imagine! Holiday Party on December 5.

Attending the Joint Budget Committee briefing was an eye opening experience. It is always a learning experience for me to see how the Colorado General Assembly directly affects Imagine! and those with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) receiving services across the state. The majority of our group attended the Joint Budget Committee briefing on December 5.

To my own personal surprise, a lot of this briefing was spent explaining terms, acronyms, and general information about services to the committee, made up of Representatives and Senators of the Colorado General Assembly. I was, however, grateful for the explanations, as a lot of the information presented was fast paced and seemed to be out of my immediate scope of knowledge of services and their funding in our state. I became aware of the transfer of I/DD Waiver Services from the Department of Human Services to the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing. I learned a lot of the differences between Community Centered Boards (CCBs), such as Imagine!, and Regional Centers in our state and how and why they are funded differently. I also learned and heard about current waitlists and how some services are struggling to grow as fast as people are coming off the waitlist. You can view the briefing summary and final hearing decisions at the two links below.

This month we will be meeting up in two groups to begin discussions on our case study topics to get the ball rolling. Elena, Sarah and I will be pursuing the topic of Employee Compensation Packages and the benefits employees receive. We will be exploring what it would mean to Imagine! if all employees who were eligible accessed their benefits. We will also be measuring the cost of how wages would change if benefits were allocated to wages instead of compensation packages.

Meagan, Emily, and Mason will be working on a case study on the topic of Person Centered Thinking. This past year, a federal rule was made to ensure that our individuals in long term services, and supports and in home and community based services will receive fairness in their opportunities for employment, control and choice over their life and finances, and integration into the community, just as those outside of services are granted. The goal of this case study is to explore the avenues in which Imagine! is already training for and implementing Person Centered Thinking and compare it to other similar organizations. This group will determine if Imagine!’s current training and implementation are sufficient, prior to the state potentially mandating its own methodology. Findings will be formally presented to the Strategic Planning Committee in May.

As a group, we finished reading our first book, “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team,” and will be meeting to discuss it soon. This book was a great read and we highly recommend it to any and all! Personally, I could relate this book not only to my work team, but also in my personal relationships outside of work. The book is written as a fable telling the story of a woman in a new CEO position with a dysfunctional executive team. The book goes through the five dysfunctions of this team and how they are made better by working through each dysfunction as a team. The book talks a lot about how teams need accountability and a common goal, as well as what it takes to get a team to a place where they can hold one another accountable to that common goal. Again, we highly recommend this book to all!

In the upcoming months, we are looking forward to a lot of hard work towards our case studies, reading our second book, “The Reason I Jump,” by Naoki Higashida, and attending the Mountain States Employers Council’s two day “Leadership Through Influence” conference in February. Thank you all so much for your interest in our progress and support!

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