LEADS FORUM: Sandusky needs team to succeed

CAROLE ROMP, RN, Stein Hospice Member, LEADS Class of 2008
Sandusky Register Staff
May 24, 2010

CAROLE ROMP, RN, Stein Hospice

Member, LEADS Class of 2008

"There is no 'I' in the word TEAM."

This is a quote from Larry Cook, past athletic director and football coach at Sandusky High School and a 2008 inductee into the Sandusky High School Hall of Fame. The concept of teamwork is stressed in the curriculum of Leadership Erie County (formerly known as "LEADS") and the multiple projects completed over the 25-year history prove that when individuals work together for a common cause without the focus on personal gain, much can be accomplished.

In the Workplace Environment Session of 2007-08 Leadership Erie County, Connie Dagg from Firelands Regional Medical Center presented the ACE Program. ACE stands for "Attitude, Commitment, and Enthusiasm." Hospital Administrator Chuck Stark tells everyone at Firelands they need to "ACE" themselves when they come to work so they can do the best for their patients as well as their fellow workers. Under his leadership, the community has seen not only the expansion of facilities and services, but also a new focus on teamwork to provide excellence in care.

A Leadership Erie County Project is another example of teamwork. A group of eight has brought together multiple talents to make a difference in the community. The Men's Garden Club is one of Erie County's best kept secrets. Our project is called "Men's Garden Club: Out of the Cellar Tour," and we named ourselves the Cellar Dwellers. The Cellar Dwellers are creating a brochure as an education and outreach tool designed to increase awareness among the residents and tourists about the activities and contributions of the Men's Garden Club. Many hours have been spent cleaning the Potato Cellar at Osborn Park for better storage use for the club members. The potato cellar is in the hill behind the five-bay garage at the park. The cellar walls tell many stories of the prisoners who worked the prison farm up until 1968. With electricity, new ground cover and a secure entrance, the club members will have a much better facility for storing their equipment.

The 2007 Lake Erie Choral Festival is another example of teamwork. Fourteen community members who shared a common love of choral music came together to organize a week-end of intense choral instruction under the leadership of a world famous choral director. Partnering with the Wightman-Wieber Charitable Foundation in addition to securing grant and individual support, the 150 singers were able to participate at minimal cost. The Festival culminated in a free concert provided as a gift to the community. The remaining funds were gifted to the scholarship funds honoring two community choral music legends, Mildred McCrystal (through the Sandusky/Erie County Community Foundation) and Beverlie Mayer (through the Firelands Chorus).

Teamwork is an important concept at Stein Hospice working together to provide comfort, compassion and support during life's final journey. Whether in the home, at a hospital, in a nursing facility, or in the Stein Hospice Care Center, the staff and volunteers address not only the physical, but the emotional and spiritual needs of the individual and the family. The staff and volunteers communicate frequently, working as a team to provide continuity which is so important at this time in life's journey.

This philosophy of teamwork needs to transcend the work place and the community and government. When the individual puts aside his or her personal agenda and works for the good of the team and the good of the community, we will all benefit.