When I was growing MediPurpose in the early days, many blogs and articles that I read about the difficulties facing startup medical product companies only motivated me to beat the odds. Now it’s the beginning of 2011 and our second decade in operation, and it is no small measure of success for me that MediPurpose has not only survived, but also flourished.
Among other factors, the MediPurpose success story has been made possible by the dedication of certain key employees who have worked with the company for more than five years. At our company’s annual dinner on 8 January 2011, we acknowledged three such employees whose contributions have not only been instrumental for our growth, but have demonstrated some of the traits that I feel define a good employee. Three of these traits include:
Three years after launching our SurgiLance® safety lancet in the American medical device market, we needed a trusted person to establish a beachhead in Europe for MediPurpose. In November 2003, I reached out to my brother, Stephen Yi, who agreed to move from his familiar accounting job to do sales and business development for a new medical device in a drastically unfamiliar industry and geography.Stephen Yi, Group CFO (with MediPurpose since 2003)
However, his personal commitment and his faith in MediPurpose’s potential soon paid off. Within six months, Stephen secured our first NHS contract that put us on the map for medical products in Europe.
As MediPurpose expanded its medical device distribution capabilities in Europe, additional resources were brought in. Today, as the group’s CFO, Stephen focuses on operations and accounting.
Cheryl Channell, Customer Services Manager (with MediPurpose since 2005)
Cheryl’s dedicated service was interrupted briefly in 2007 when she left MediPurpose for two weeks. A new manager I had hired was creating a lot of stress for her, and she resigned just as I was about to ask the manager to leave.Cheryl has been the heart of our superior customer service since 2005, looking after our medical device customers with the warmth and care that she naturally shows to her friends and family. Not only is Cheryl committed to doing her best, she also takes personal ownership of her responsibilities and treats the company as her own.
Serendipitously, Cheryl’s new job did not turn out as she expected, and she enquired about returning to MediPurpose when she found out that her former manager had left. I welcomed Cheryl back, and since then, our entire company has been committed to maintaining open channels of communication so that we never again risk losing top employees at the peril of keeping those that create stress and tension.
Randy Prather, President & COO (with MediPurpose since 2006)
Over the years, Randy assumed additional responsibilities in New Business Development, Operations, Quality and International Business—always without complaint, even when he didn’t have the experience in some of those areas. For a small entrepreneurial company, Randy was prepared to do whatever was required to further the cause of the company.Randy joined MediPurpose as VP of Sales & Marketing in February 2006 and swiftly established productive relationships with a growing network of medical product distributors. In June 2008, Randy was promoted to president and chief operating officer (COO).
With such a diverse role in the company, Randy and I have often worked through many difficult issues at MediPurpose. The key to our successful working relationship has been our open and honest communication—occasionally heated, but always respectful and professional. More specifically, Randy has the ability to argue with me without us getting personal, offensive or angry. This speaks a lot about Randy’s communication skill, which I guess is the hallmark of a world-class salesperson!
Three Great Employees for Three Great Reasons
Stephen, Cheryl and Randy are unique individuals with unique roles and responsibilities at MediPurpose. Yet, each has thrived at MediPurpose for as long as they have because they care…about themselves, about each other, and about the company. As a result, they make it very easy for me to reward them. But as much as I can reward them with mementos, titles and money, I have a sneaking suspicion that their pride in who they are and what they do is beyond any material or financial award.
What other attributes have you found in your loyal and dedicated employees? Let us know in the comments.
Tags: Awards, MediPurpose™ Employees