“Benchmarks’ Center for Quality Integration redesigns the local child welfare/behavioral health system, changing the way child welfare, Medicaid Managed Care Organizations, local providers, and the wider community understand the need for accessible, appropriate mental health services for children, youth and families who have experienced potentially traumatic events.”
Starting a new job has its challenges, one of which is learning a new culture. As a newcomer, being with the organization just under a year, I can honestly say that Benchmarks is a collaboration nation. The mixing of minds--ideas, expertise, and experiences--has made for a unique journey full of nonstop learning. Team collaboration has led to the creation of an inclusive environment that keeps the team members energized, creativity flowing, and cultivates a work culture that is both productive and joyful. One example of this would be our monthly meetings in which we discuss concepts of project management and share how project implementation techniques come to life in our work. We also share and troubleshoot how we can best utilize these concepts and ideals within our partnerships.
‘Change agents’ is a term we frequently use to describe ourselves here at Benchmarks, specifically due to our consultation, project management and implementation work. Change agents are individuals who are responsible for promoting and enabling changes within an organization to assist them in their goals for success. Part of being a change agent includes guiding and supporting others through transformations and ensuring that any new processes and procedures are implemented and delivering value to the organization, for example, training DSS staff in trauma-informed care or using fidelity monitoring models to ensure proper assessments by clinicians.
Being a change agent is not just something we do with our partnerships, but it is also taking place within Benchmarks as an agency. Leadership is always seeking out a diversity of opinions and ideas among staff to build strategies and solve problems. As a result of this, employees such as myself are more engaged and feel valued by the organization for my contributions. Not only is individuality and thinking outside of the box supported here at Benchmarks, but it’s highly encouraged. Valuing individuality helps contribute to the team environment; when we value each individual part of the team, everyone has a voice, and the team is able to work more cohesively overall.
Working for an organization whose values and interests align with my own is something I consider to be priceless. Emphasizing assistance for those in need, promoting social welfare and enhancing human well-being through healthy human relationships, although challenging at times, is very fulfilling work. It is great to be part of a team like Benchmarks and I believe it has set me up for future success, in both a professional capacity and in my personal life as well. I’ve learned so much just this year alone, and I can’t wait to see what’s to come!