Blake Weber, Scheduling and Recruiting Manager, is leaving Independence Plus to pursue his dream of opening a restaurant in California. In honor of Healthcare Recruiter Day and the departure of our friend and colleague, we sat down with Blake to discuss what he learned in his role and how Scheduling and Recruiting benefits our patients, families, and nurses.
Graduating from Northwestern University with a degree in Psychology, Blake came to us fresh out of college and ready to put his stamp on the world. Often quiet and reserved (until you get to know him!), Blake is analytical, innovative, and a great listener. These skills have been hugely beneficial to Independence Plus over the last three and a half years, and we believe that Blake has accomplished what he set out to do—make a real difference. Today is Blake’s last day with Independence Plus.
Q: What skills did you develop that surprised you?
A: I learned how to read people and build relationships. Every time I spoke with a nurse, it was a chance to get to know them a little bit better. I learned that everyone is in this line of work for a different reason, whether it’s an interest in providing 1-on-1 patient care or working with our ventilator-dependent patient population.
Q: What did you learn about yourself while working here?
A: I never lost sight of what truly mattered here, which is patient care and safety. Sometimes, that meant I had to make tough decisions, but it ensured that the patient was going to be well cared for. Because I strongly believed in what we are doing, it became easier to do the right thing.
Q: What are you most proud of?
A: I feel like when I leave, the Scheduling and Recruiting Department will be in a great place. I have spent a lot of my time here trying to come up with “big ideas.” Often, these ideas alone are not the most realistic, but they spurred conversations that lead to many smaller changes. For example, with a lot of feedback and hard work from a team of people, we developed the Home Nursing Residency Program from the ground up. I honestly believe this program has already been a huge benefit to our patients, our families, the nurses who participate, and in particular our scheduling department.
Q: What did our patients and families teach you?
A: Life is hard, and we should live as much as we can while we can. I have seen patients and families of all types. Consistently, these folks struggle with daily living and things that many people take for granted. I have real respect for our families and patients and I hope that I’ll be able to show the fortitude that they have shown when my life presents real challenges and I need to find their kind of strength.
Q: What will you miss the most?
A: I will miss the people. The hardest part about leaving is walking away from the people who have honestly become like a family to me. We’ve shared meals, stories, and good times, and those memories will last a lifetime.
Q: In your opinion, what makes Independence Plus different from other home care agencies?
A: No other agency has a Tamara Müller, our Founder and CEO. She is the rock of this company and is willing to do everything in her power to ensure that all of our patients and families have the best care possible.
Q: What skills will you take with you and apply to your new business?
A: I’ve gained the ability to see with a long-term, broad vision that will be invaluable for running my own business. The ability to look farther down the road and think about how a decision will affect the future as much as the present is something I hope every scheduler gains in their time with Independence Plus.
Q: What would you like to share about your future?
A: I’ll be in north San Diego County, just a short walk away from the University of California – San Diego campus. If anyone is in the area, I’d love for you to stop by The Pita Pit and grab a pita for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. I’ll probably still charge you full price, though. ; )
Blake, we will miss you, your delicious cooking, and dry sense of humor. It has been a pleasure working with you.