I am a big proponent of teamwork. I have played sports basically my whole life and have learned the importance of teamwork. There is so much to learn from it. As I’m finishing up my 7th year at Sunrise, I have seen our teamwork go from being okay to being some of the best.
My first day on the job was December 31, 2009. I was nervous to shadow my staff and learn the ropes. My team consisted of 5 wonderful youth mentors that I learned a lot from. If I didn’t have the support of my team, I would have struggled to learn the importance of my job as a youth mentor. We had about 24 students, give or take, and had a pretty good handle on our shift. However, some shifts handled things differently than ours and some conflicts would arise because as a whole residential team, we weren’t consistent.
A few months later, my team changed. I was promoted to math teacher and was now a part of a principal – who was also our English teacher, a science teacher who was previously the science and math teacher (before me) and a history teacher. Once in a while, our academic team didn’t always agree with our residential or clinical teams. We didn’t always have each other’s back. There were little things that remained inconsistent and it sometimes became hard to hold students accountable or teach them to hold themselves accountable because we would let the little things slide.
Fast-forward to 2016. We now have around 60 students and some awesome teams. When I look around now, though, all of the teams are on the same page and we communicate much better with each other. Our teams have grown a lot by each department and therefore our entire team is a lot bigger than it used to be. Each department is running smoothly and it helps our Sunrise team also run smoothly. We have learned a lot as a Sunrise family. We have gone through the “doesn’t works” to doing what does. We’ve been able to teach the new comers – youth mentors, therapist, human resources, cooks, and teachers alike – the things that work and the things that might not work. They’ve also been able to bring some great ideas to the table that we may have never thought about.
As I have watched our team grow in the 7 years that I’ve been here, not only have we grown in numbers, we have grown in giving the best care to our students. As a team, we have improved our communication, our development in individual departments, our care across the board, also integrating things like DBT across the board, and more. I am proud to be a part of this team and the work that we are doing. We help pick each other up and reinsure that we are providing the best care that we can. I enjoy coming to work knowing the people that I get to work with everyday. The team can make all the difference.