Over the years, a lot of people have asked me, what’s the Mission Statement of FTS? I really didn’t know how to answer this question for many years. I knew what I wanted to do, but it was hard to describe in just a few words. I always thought, “I want to do a lot of things, how can I put all of this in 1 statement?!”. After a lot of thought/consideration, I believe I can clearly explain the mission of FTS as this…
To change the Culture of the Home Health Industry.
This statement is pretty all-encompassing of what we are trying to do as a company. This ties in everything from the type of staff we want to hire, the type of work-environment we want to create, the type of team we want to build, and the level of quality we want to deliver to our patients.
Whenever I speak to student groups, the first question I usually ask is “How many of you went into Therapy school, with the goal of being a Home Health Therapist?”. 9 times out of 10, no hands are raised. My response is always “And that is EXACTLY why I decided to start FTS”. At present, there are very few students that have a goal of entering into Home Health once they graduate. Personally, I believe this is due to the existing Culture of Home Health. At FTS, we call this “Old Culture”. Realistically, a lot of schools direct students AWAY from Home Health due to this Old Culture. If I was to describe Old Culture, I would describe it as...
- Limited Support
- Limited Training
- No Community
- No Accountability
I started my PT career 8 years ago, working for a Home Health staffing company (they are no longer in business) that provided a similar service as FTS does. I remember coming home after working at this company for a month, and feeling incredibly lonely. I had worked at this company for a month and still had not talked to one of my co-workers. Quite honestly, I didn’t even know who my co-workers were, or if I even had co workers. Even if I did have co-workers, I didn’t even know how to contact them. I remember when I had questions, I had no idea who to ask. Realistically, this led to me “figuring it out” which was an incredible disservice to my patients, especially since I was a new grad. Overall, the level of quality I was delivering as a PT was not what I wanted it to be.
I remember seeing social media posts saying things like, “Create the things you wish existed”. This never had any relevance to me until after working this first job in Home Health. I wanted to work for a company where I felt supported, where I felt like part of team, where I felt like I was developing as a professional, and where I felt like I was giving patients the care that they deserved. This is the point where I decided to start FTS.
At FTS, we do things very different than your typical Home Health Therapy organization. Here are a few characteristics of the “FTS Culture”…
- We want to create Team environment, in an industry that is historically known for isolation. We look to bring on Therapists who want to be a part of something bigger than themselves. We look to bring on Therapists who want to be a part of the mission.
Leadership and Professional Development:
- We know that we will only go as far as our Leaders take us. We try and constantly invest in our Leaders, as well as identify and develop future leaders.
Support for our staff:
- We have made huge investments in Technology to get all the information at our Therapists’ fingertips. We know that our staff can’t adequately do their job, if they don’t have the right information in front of them.
Connecting our staff
- We believe that if we can get our people connected, good things are going to happen. Connecting people brings about Collaboration, and Collaboration brings about improved quality.
We have gone from 1 Therapist to 350 in 6 years time. A lot of people wonder, how this was possible. I believe that we have grown our Therapist count, by bringing in a subset of Therapists that would not normally be working in Home Health, to work in Home Health, due to the Culture that we have created.
The vision of FTS is to have an IMPROVEMENT in care when patient’s return to home, as opposed to a falloff of care. This can be done by getting more quality Therapists interested in working in the Home Health industry. We believe that this can only be accomplished, by creating an environment that these quality candidates would want to work in. Our job at FTS, is simply to create this environment and then “Open the Door”. As Kevin Costner says in Field of Dreams, our hope is that “If we build it, they will come”. So far 350 Therapists have walked through our door, and we CAN’T WAIT to meet the next 350.