When I was offered an opportunity to start a new Onboarding program for our faculty practice 11 years ago, there were very few successful programs out there to replicate. Fortunately for me, I was a member of AAPPR and was able to rely heavily on my colleagues to bounce around ideas and they were always there to encourage me. As my program developed, I expressed interest in presenting at an AAPPR conference. Though I was nervous about presenting, I genuinely wanted to share what I was doing and learn with other AAPPR members. After interest grew in onboarding within AAPPR, I was asked to create an onboarding presentation for our AAPPR fellowship program (Now the CPRP Certification). I accepted the invitation to present and found out – I love presenting! I had found a hidden passion. Additionally, one of the highlights of my career was in 2016, our onboarding program was awarded a Best Practice honor by Joint Commission. Was AAPPR done helping me unearth and bring out passions and talents inside me? Not by a long shot.
Early in my membership, I realized that the recruitment niche of the academic arena was not truly represented in AAPPR. When I approached the AAPPR leadership at that time about the interest in creating a chapter for academic members, they were very supportive. Within a few short weeks of making phone calls, I had several academic members interested in creating a formal chapter – AIR – Academic In House Recruiters – and we were off and running, developing governing documents, having monthly meetings and developing educational content to meet the needs of academic members. A few years after that, I changed my role to onboarding and did the same thing – and the OAR – Onboarding and Retention Chapter – was created. I never thought I was capable of originating or leading in that capacity and gained so much from the experience. I had found more skills I didn’t know I possessed, and another hidden passion was now uncovered. I built on that success and gained more confidence to do something else I thought I’d never do and ran for an AAPPR board position where I served for six years. AAPPR had opened yet another door for me to grow and develop on my journey as a professional.
How did the journey begin? I honestly believe it was with those first few AAPPR relationships. The encouragement, answers to questions and support kept me confident enough until, in time, I was advising others. The strength of the networking within AAPPR helped me find strengths within myself. It can start with one person, or even one meeting – and the connections just blossom from there! The networking among AAPPR members is off the charts. Our members are there for each other – to celebrate with you and to help you when times are tough. When a member calls me with a question, I love being able to give them the name of another member they can call who has had similar experiences and can give them insight.
AAPPR is also there to provide support as I work to impact health care in my community. Our internal colleagues work hard to ensure our new providers have a great onboarding experience and thus help increase retention for their organization. We recently added offboarding to our department’s responsibility and reporting to leadership on trends/ concerns that need attention to ensure our providers are happy and stay. Less turnover means less red tape and interruption of first-rate service and AAPPR is there to give recruiters the information and inspiration they need to retain top providers.
The AAPPR networking and educational opportunities really come to life at AAPPR conferences and events. The events help keep members connected, and the more involved you get in AAPPR, the more valuable, and fun, the connections become. Something fun to do at an AAPPR conference is to wear ribbons with various titles. Some of those are traditional – Board Member, Presenter, etc. and some that the vendors give out are more fun. At one of the conferences a few years back, an AAPPR colleague had a DASPR designation and I said that I liked all his ribbons except for the DASPR…we talked about him needing to get his FASPR certification (Now the CPRP Certification). At the next conference, when we connected, he proudly showed off his FASPR ribbon. I guess another hidden passion I’ve found is helping to promote all the tools and resources available within this organization, just like others did for me when I got started. Members encouraging other members and both wanting the best for each other – that’s AAPPR!