Trinity Services, Inc

From My Pad to Yours. . . 

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A Blog by Art Dykstra


From My Pad to Yours is about leadership and other topics, and is written by Art Dykstra, Director of the Trinity Consulting Group.

Personal Growth

by Art Dykstra | Sep 27, 2017

Here’s something we all know but don’t always think about. Every day, we as people are either getting better or we are getting worse. We do not stay the same. We get better or worse in our personal lives–in matters of health and well-being, in our relationships as dads, mothers, spouses. And we get better or worse in our professional careers–as the CEO, team leader, program director, network director, QDDP, center director, teacher, nurse, therapist or counselor. The same could be said about organizations. Is our organization getting better or worse? 

Personal growth occurs when we raise the bar for ourselves. It is the process of our development rather than a personal possession. It invigorates, energizes, and helps us flourish and experience well-being, and as we flourish, so does the organization.

Trinity’s ability to improve the quality of its services and supports rises with the skill level and increased knowledge of our employees. That is why it is important to have vibrant and high quality staff development efforts. Trinity staff have a variety of in-house and off-site learning opportunities. In-house learning—both formal and informal—occurs in a variety of settings. For instance:

  • New employees receive pre-service training during which they are introduced to developmental disabilities, mental illness, basic health and safety, and the prevention of abuse and neglect, along with much more.
  • Employees also receive on-the-job training that introduces them to issues as diverse as human rights, abuse and neglect, preparing family style meals, and procedures to follow when doing laundry.
  • Staff at various levels attend on-site trainings, presentations and classes, such as Safety Care, CPR and First Aid, techniques for interviewing people with developmental disabilities, and health issues related to developmental disabilities and mental illness.
  • New staff and students in behavioral health also receive mentoring and supervision that offers them specialized instruction/support in therapeutic skills.

Formal off-site learning options include:

  • Conferences – Employees are encouraged to attend conferences that offer current information in their fields. The National Association for Qualified Developmental Disabilities Professionals (NAQ) is a common choice since it provides the latest information and trends in the support of people with developmental disabilities and mental illness.
  • Master’s degree programs – National Louis University has a Master’s Degree in Human Service Management and Southern Illinois University a Master’s in Behavioral Analysis that employees can pursue.

Obviously, growth can be a matter of skill acquisition or knowledge gained, and employees can do it by themselves or with others. Regardless of the means, those who are growing and seeking to improve are more confident and feel better about themselves and their contributions. That always enhances the services that the organization provides.

NOTE: This is Part 9 of a 10-part series on Trinity's Core Values.
To read Part 1 on Servant Leadership, click here.
To read Part 2 on Serving and Supporting, click here.
​To read Part 3 on Honest and Open Communication, click here.
To read Part 4 on Discretionary Effort, click here.
To read Part 5 on Thinking Ahead and Following Through, click here.
To read Part 6 on Collaboration, click here.
To read Part 7 on Stewardship, click here.
To read Part 8 on Achieving Outcomes, click here.

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    We feel privileged to be celebrating our 68th year of providing supports and services for people with developmental disabilities and mental illness. Since first opening our doors as a small school, Trinity Services has been committed to helping individuals flourish and lead more independent lives. We now serve more than 3,500 people through an array of innovative programs. This would not be possible without generous supporters like you.

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