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Servant Leadership Snapshot

Devereux’s talented and hard-working team members lead to serve, while inspiring others to learn and grow. Our “Servant Leadership Snapshot” series shines a light on exemplary servant leaders across our organization who empower all those around them to be their best selves. Look below to read features written by these compassionate collaborators as they help their teams, programs, departments and centers reach even greater heights through Servant Leadership.


Kelli Trainor, residential directorKelli Trainor

Center/office location: Devereux Pocono - Newfoundland

Length of service: January 2011

How do you embed an inclusive, Servant Leadership mindset into your daily processes?

I try to treat others how I would like to be treated. I am supported by a fantastic team, and am humbled by their dedication, hard work and service, which helps me to keep Servant Leadership principles at the forefront of my mind. I communicate regularly with my team, and take suggestions for improvements from all. At Devereux Pocono, it is extremely helpful when our teams have the same mindset of supporting our individuals, as well as our colleagues. When everyone pitches in, we can overcome any challenge we may face.

How do you inspire others to embrace Servant Leadership practices?

I try to exhibit the Seven Pillars of Servant Leadership at different times. When I face a challenge, I try to remind myself of the pillar that best supports the situation. Whether that be putting others first; being compassionate about people’s situations; or making difficult decisions and trying to find the balance of the whole. When I meet with others, I try to focus on the bigger picture or remind them that, sometimes, a hard decision to make a change today will lead to a better tomorrow. I also hold myself accountable. I apologize when I make a mistake and take responsibility for it.

In my 10 years at Devereux Pocono, I have learned a lot about myself by others teaching or showing me. I have very positive relationships with those I work with, and I attribute that to embracing the Servant Leadership principles and focusing on how to best serve others. I also believe in our organization’s mission and teamwork - we cannot fulfill ourselves or others without both.

Share an example or story of how you demonstrated compassion or delivered quality customer service at your center.

We have had situations where individuals have come to live in our care and their families have been stressed or anxious about the new environment. As a team, we focus on making the individual feel welcome, safe and secure in his or her new home, and helping the family adjust to the changes. For one individual, that meant holding weekly team meetings; developing supports for him in his home and strategies to communicate how those supports are working; and increasing our communications with his family. All of these strategies helped to build trust over time, and now, that individual and his family have adjusted and feel comfortable. What could have been a very challenging situation turned into a team effort to provide the best possible care for the individual. He is now thriving in his new home, and his family is happy to see his progress.