“You may not always end up where you thought you were going, but you will always end up where you were meant to be.” – Jessica Taylor
This quote could not be truer and resonates deeply with both of us as we sit here reflecting on the journey that has brought us to today. Both Betty and I, like many entrepreneurs, have a long and detailed road filled with lessons and preparations that have given us a unique skill set for challenges facing the long term care industry and our most vulnerable sector.
One avenue for our commitment and passion to geriatrics is based on personal life experiences. Being faced with the challenges to support an aging family member through the process of various required services where information and support are not readily available or clear is a daunting task to everyone involved. In a time when we look most at our industry professionals to provide clarity, we were shocked to find that all parties involved were trying to navigate an overly-strained system.
This leads to a system that leaves the workers in an overworked and underappreciated state, which trickles down to healthcare worker burnout, low morale in the workplace, more call-ins causing short staffing, reduced funding, and reduced time to care for patients/residents. Family members, in turn, are longing to have more knowledge and support because of their need to ensure their family member is receiving the highest quality of care that we all deserve.
Betty and I have followed along with the Plan A journey almost since inception, which we attribute to their positive presence in the community along with the support of the Greater City of Sudbury Chamber of Commerce. When you meet extremely like-minded people, and hear sayings such as “We take care of the people who take care of our most vulnerable people” how could you not be intrigued as to how you could play a role in bringing that mission and vision of Plan A into other much-needed communities? Of course, while watching from the sidelines, we pursued other career, community and entrepreneurial avenues which included providing HR support to a construction company, supporting a co-working space, owning/operating an event planning business, owning/operating Network Marketing Masterminds for small businesses to learn how to network/market and support local, supervising and managing a medical cannabis clinic, advocating for total healthcare/alternative practices/quality of life, providing leadership to a hotel chain, investigating healthcare service providers for an insurance company and finally completing dig locate requests for the province of Ontario.
Although it may seem that none of the previous work experience mentioned above has an asset to what we are currently doing, you would be surprised. Each one of these paths has provided a skill set and/or connection to a person that we use/network with today. Examples include HR skills of managing a team, labour laws, public speaking, sales experience, networking, building a brand, marketing, technologies, leadership skills, coordination and prioritization of tasks, understanding the populations and counties within our territory and even simple tasks such as looking for our registered staff’s information and their history on the College of Nurses of Ontario database.
What each journey lead back to was wanting to create change, striving to be a strong leader in the community, providing exceptional job opportunities that allow the staff to blossom in their professional, as well as personal, lives and having a huge passion for seniors. In a time in both of our lives where the stars aligned causing us to connect with one another and sit down on the couch with a cup of tea, a sure sense of direction and the passion to know that if we want it and need it, we can create it, a post from Plan A’s President, Sheri Tomchick, came across our Facebook pages announcing the opportunity to bring Plan A to the Kingston & Quinte region. We have been living, loving and pushing the boundaries of what’s possible ever since.
~Sarah Cadorette & Betty Lauzon, Owners/Operators, Plan A Kingston & Quinte