2. Shelly Hoffman
"Shelly is the best director I've ever worked with," said Mary Rustick of GI Associates Endoscopy Center in Wausau, Wis. Shelly Hoffman, RN, BSN, is not only recognized for her endoscopic talent, but also her encouraging personality.
Rustick said Shelly's presence at the GI Associates Endoscopy Center is one of the main reasons why she loves her job. She described Shelly's personality as warm and compassionate, and her attitude as reassuring.
"She comes to work every day with a smile on her face and infuses all of us with it," Rustick said. "She deeply cares about each and every one of us as well as all of our patients."
Rustick explained that Shelly's attitude in the workplace has made her a role model for staff members and other physicians. It also has earned her much respect and praise from patients.
"She is an invaluable resource and mentor to all of us on a daily basis," Rustick said. "She strives every day to help each and every one of us be successful in our roles."
Rustick has personally benefitted from Shelly's mentoring. Her new role in infection control has gone more smoothly thanks to Shelly's unwavering assistance. Also, Rustick said Shelly makes the work environment a fun and uplifting place to be.
"She always encourages us to have fun and keeps things light," Rustick said. "When things get rough she pitches right in to help us all out."
Shelly's true dedication is shown through her willingness to assist everyone at the center. No matter how much work or pressure she is under, Shelly never fails to lend a helping hand to those in need, according to Rustick. Her "open door" policy and flexibility encourages everyone to not hesitate with questions or concerns.
"The GI Associates Endoscopy Center physicians and staff are very lucky to have her," Rustick added.
Shelly told EndoNurse magazine that she is humbled to have progressed so high in the contest.
"First, I am honored to be nominated, and am flattered that one of my staff would make the effort to fill out the nomination form and then fill the form with such kind words," Shelly said. "Second, to know that I received enough votes to be considered in the top-five is a pleasant surprise—I never would have thought!"
Being a classic team player, Shelly attributes her success to her whole endoscopy center.
"I consider it [a privilege] to work with the nurses, techs, physicians and leadership that I interact with on a daily basis," Shelly said.
She added that she loves her job, and not just because of the daily duties associated with it, but because she is "fortunate to work each day with a group of dedicated professionals who choose to give it their all to care for our patients and make each patient feel they are special to us. We are a great team, because of the compassion every member offers every patient."
Shelly finds it interesting to deal with the vast array of patients seen in endoscopy.
"Our patients range from those without any apprehension to those that are deeply fearful of undergoing procedure," she said. "I find it very gratifying to be able to alleviate the fears of our patients, offer them as pleasant experience as we are able and know they will not hesitate to come back to us should the need arise."
The relatively brief visit that each patient has offers the opportunity to meet many people each day, according to Shelly.
"They may be anxious, fearful, comedic or very quiet, but all have a need for compassionate care," she said. "I love the opportunity to turn their perceived fearful procedure into a simple, easy test day. Then, at the end of the patient care day, it is such a gratifying feeling to know I gave the best care possible and our endo team worked together to make it all happen. In the end, we give our patients great care—and we are all made better for our experience. What’s not to love!?"
Of course, it's not just the patients who are important. It's also the staff.
"My most important responsibility as a leader in our group is to make our work environment as amiable as possible, with opportunity for each and every staff member to grow in their personal and professional life," Shelly said. "I find great satisfaction in seeing potential for growth amongst my staff—and enabling them to excel—whether it is learning a new role, successfully completing a project or growing as a leader or resource person for our group.
Shelly's proudest moments happen when she sees that she's helped one of her colleagues gain confidence in themselves.
"There is nothing better than seeing the pride that someone feels," she said, "and to know I had a small part in their success."