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Conference inspires Devereux’s Servant Leadership Champions to create a culture of ‘Customer Service Excellence’

 

As Devereux embarks on its second year of implementing Servant Leadership best practices, more than 50 emerging leaders gathered for three days of training on how they can help drive these efforts.

Wawa Vice Chairman and former CEO Howard Stoeckel led a discussion at this year’s “Servant Leadership Champions Conference” about his book, “The Wawa Way,” and on building a culture of Servant Leadership.

Members of Devereux’s national Board of Trustees, Lisa McCann, Shaye Schloss and James H. Schwab, Esq., shared their perspectives on Servant Leadership during a panel discussion.

As Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health embarks on its second year of implementing Servant Leadership across the organization’s 13 centers, more than 50 emerging leaders – selected as Servant Leadership Champions and Champions-in-Training – gathered for three days of intensive training on how they can help drive these efforts. 

This year’s “Servant Leadership Champions Conference” – held at Devereux’s headquarters in Villanova, Pa. – focused on creating a culture of “Customer Service Excellence.” Wawa Vice Chairman and former CEO Howard Stoeckel, and conference keynote speaker, led a discussion about his book, “The Wawa Way,” and explained how Servant Leadership fits perfectly into Wawa’s culture and Devereux’s. He noted many similarities between the organizations: long history and strong cultural foundations, as well as a legacy of service. 

Members of Devereux’s national Board of Trustees, including Lisa McCann, Shaye Schloss and James H. Schwab, Esq., also shared their perspectives on Servant Leadership during a panel discussion, and stressed “Customer Service Excellence” as a critical component of Devereux’s continuum of care, emphasizing the family perspective. 

“I want to thank Howard Stoeckel and our wonderful trustees for leading such energizing and engaging discussions that will motivate and inspire our organization to reach even greater heights through Servant Leadership,” said Devereux President and CEO Carl E. Clark II. “While we are incredibly proud of what we have achieved since launching our Servant Leadership initiative last year, we cannot wait to see what we will accomplish in the year ahead. Our Champions play a significant role in our continued success, and the work they do is vital to ensuring we put Servant Leadership principles into practice every day.”  

Measuring success; achieving new goals

Since Devereux rolled out its Servant Leadership initiative in late 2018, the organization’s annual employee turnover rate at the national level decreased by 10 percent, while the annual turnover rate at its Pennsylvania centers decreased by 20 percent. Devereux’s goal in 2020 is to decrease the national annual turnover rate by an additional 4 percent. 

In the coming year, the organization will focus on creating a culture of “Customer Service Excellence,” where team members ensure they provide the highest level of customer service and satisfaction to the individuals and families they serve, along with key external partners, and each other. 

“There is a difference between ‘good’ and ‘great’ customer service. At Devereux, we have never settled for ‘good.’ We continue to advance forward, striving to ensure our individuals, families and staff feel valued and supported,” explained Devereux Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer and Servant Leadership Executive Sponsor Dr. Rhea Fernandes. “Our ability to define and embody the highest level of customer service in our industry will not only allow us to achieve all of our strategic goals, but also significantly advance the field of behavioral healthcare as we help change lives for those living with emotional, behavioral and cognitive differences. Our Servant Leadership Champions and Champions-in-Training are an integral part of this process, and have the skills and passion to take Devereux to the next level in Customer Service Excellence.” 

Champions share their feedback …  

Devereux’s Servant Leadership Champions and Champions-in-Training said they felt re-energized and empowered by the conference as they returned to their respective centers, ready to support the organization’s efforts to foster “Customer Service Excellence.”  

“Our customers are central to everything we do, and as servant leaders, it is important to recognize their value. After listening to Howard Stoeckel, I see similarities between how Devereux aims to provide exceptional customer service and how Wawa built its brand on creating a culture of customer engagement, and by investing in its employees.”
– Devereux Pennsylvania – Adult Services Program Administrator Kirk Smith 

“The questions-and-answer session with our trustees made me realize how important it is to improve our overall communication efforts. Customer service is not only a necessary component of our communications with our families and guardians, but with all customers, both internal and external. Incorporating Servant Leadership into our daily tasks will help improve our overall customer service experience, resulting in a more engaged staff that can better support one another and, most importantly, the individuals and families we serve.”
– Devereux New York Quality Management Specialist Marcella Stabile  

“The conference was a true testament to the power of Servant Leadership. One of my biggest takeaways was the realization that we are all part of an amazing team. There are so many remarkable people – all willing to help make this project a success. Creating a culture of ‘Customer Service Excellence’ is something that every person at every center can get involved in and feel good about.”
– Devereux Connecticut – The Glenholme School Digital Media Specialist Robert Fappiano

 

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