Throughout history, it’s been individuals willing to take advantage of opportunities — and in the process risk failure — who have achieved great things. Left by the wayside are those who could not muster the courage to act and, perhaps even more sadly, those for whom history’s stage never drew back its curtain — the statesman without a crisis, the general without a war, the artist without a patron.
In short, while the man can make history, he cannot do so without history’s consent — without history also providing a proper forum in which to act his part. As such, we must hone our senses to detect these few and far between chances to shine. Once identified, we must pursue them with all possible vigor.
Reading the most recent installment of Jorge Grillo’s fascinating Meditech 6.0 Diary, I saw such an opportunity presenting itself to some of his vendors. Interestingly, the vendors in this instance do not include Meditech, which seems to have gone above and beyond by offering Canton-Potsdam (Grillo’s hospital) the opportunity to perform an upgrade on Jan. 1, 2012. Now, at first blush, this might seem like a “thanks for nothing” moment, but, think about it, Meditech is willing to work on a holiday so its customer doesn’t have to wait a few more months for an upgrade. And, most importantly, the organization is promising support will be just what it would be at any other time.
So the two main players in this drama both seem very willing to work through a holiday for the good of their organizations and, ultimately, the patients in one of them. Throughout the post, Grillo never mentions he or his staff having any qualms about working on New Year’s Day. The issue of whether the holiday upgrade can move forward lies with his other vendors.
He writes: “Part of the delay in completing our risk assessment is the vendor community needing to check with their senior management on how to respond to our request.”
I can tell you exactly how each one of these vendors should respond — “Absolutely Mr. Grillo. We’re sorry to hear that you and your staff will have to work on the holiday, but we’re more than willing to join you in this effort. Please let us know exactly what we can do to ensure your success.”
And I’ll go even one better for you: some very big big shots at these vendors should lead by example and be first at the office on New Year’s Day, greeting the volunteer troops with coffee and donuts. These soldiers should get two or three other days off in exchange for the holiday they are giving up, along with receiving a monetary bonus. They should also be remembered by management as individuals who can be relied upon in times of crisis, and promoted (when the time is right) accordingly.
And let’s be honest here, we’re not talking about asking workers to traverse the Gobi with only an ice pop for sustenance. I mean, to me, New Year’s Day is a pretty silly holiday — not one calling the faithful to religious services or coalescing far-flung families (temporarily) back together. It’s just an excuse to party, folks.
And let’s not even pretend like this should be done for selfless reasons — being there for Grillo in this case is simply good business. If a tree falls in the woods and no one hears it, did it make a sound? Not to worry here — you can bet your bottom dollar that for the rest of his professional career he’ll feel a debt of gratitude to those who stepped up in his hour of need. I’m sure Grillo will also remember those whose lack of support forced him to wait a few more months for enhancements that his clinical staff and patients could benefit from now.
When those you wish to serve on a deep and meaningful level ask for help, it does not constitute an unwelcome burden but rather a (perhaps) once-in-a-relationship opportunity to bond — to show what you’re made of.
The curtain has been drawn.