Core Value #1: Failure
Alpine Therapy Services would not exist today without Failure. We really believe that failure is a key ingredient to any successful business. A quote that we love is “Failure is not the opposite of Success, it’s a part of Success”. So many people view failure as a Stop Sign. Meaning, that because a person fails at something, it means they should stop and turn the other way. If we took that position on Failure, we would not be where we are today. The timeline of our company has been failure after failure with success, then more failure. The difference is, we use failure as an opportunity to learn. That’s really all it is. When we look at other more tenured, more established companies, the only difference we see between them and ATS, is time. They have had more opportunities to fail, more opportunities to learn, and more opportunities to refine their company. We tell all of our staff that everything we do, is done because we failed at doing it a different way. Our entire company was created by Failure.
We are huge on promoting internally. That is an environment that motivates us, and is one that we would want to work in. With that said, all of our current managers have been promoted internally. We promote career growth in whatever form or fashion that means to each individual working on our team. Regardless if that means management, marketing or support staff, we always preach that their job is not to not fail, because that’s impossible. Rather, your job is to learn from your failures, and train your staff to learn from your failures. Your job is to pick yourself up after you fail, not to not fail.
We’re building a plane while it’s in flight and none of us are mechanics. We’re going to move forward, continue to fail, continue to learn, and continue to create a stronger company.
Core Value #2: Hard Work is Enough
Hard Work is enough. This is a statement that a lot of people say, but very few actually believe. Alpine Therapy Services was built by Hard Work and nothing else. All we have, is our work ethic, and fortunately, that is enough. ATS is simply the end-product of a large group of people working toward a unified cause, that truly believe that hard work is enough.
One of my biggest frustrations is when I see great ideas, great leaders, and great entrepreneurs sit on the sidelines because they don’t believe in themselves. They think that they don’t have what it takes, and write themselves off before they start. When you talk to those in society and say, “I want to do ____ (fill in the blank) with my career”, those that tell you, “You can’t because of ____ (insert: intelligence, capital, experience, etc.), are the people that sit on the sidelines their entire lives. We want to be people who Create, not people who Criticize. Everything is impossible until its done.
Hard Work is something that always levels the playing field. To be a leader, you have to truly believe that you have what it takes. When you can come to this conclusion, it really eliminates all the excuses. Work ethic reveals character, and character determines your destiny. As long as we continue to develop people who believe that “Hard Work is Enough”, we can accept whatever destination that takes us too.
Core Value #3: Be a Problem Solver, not a Complainer
Problem solving is the foundation of Alpine Therapy Services. We hope that ATS solves a problem for many of our customers, and we try to create a problem-solving environment amongst our staff. My job as CEO, is to make sure that our company continues to solve our customer’s problems. With that said, I know the best way to do that, is to train up our staff to be problem-solvers.
There will always be problems within a business. If you approach these problems with a problem-solving mentality, it creates a positive environment. And when your company has the power of positivity on your side, you can do some pretty special things. What type of company would you want to work for? One that rallies TOGETHER when problems arise, to come to a solution? Or one who points fingers when things don’t go right, and complains? Create the environment you would want to work in. No one wants to work with a bunch of complainers.
Every business has the desire to grow… until they grow… With growth comes change, with change comes problems, with problems comes an opportunity. Problems create an opportunity for true leaders to step up. True leaders are ones who unite the team when problems arise, not divide the team by complaining. Be part of the solution. All business is, is a bunch of people trying to solve the same problems, and whoever can create the best solution wins.
There are ALWAYS going to be problems. We can choose to be problem-solvers or complainers. Which do you want to be?
Core Value #4: Move Fast and be Action Oriented
Action is what separates us from 99% of the field. And if we move fast, we will be at the finish line before most companies leave the starting blocks. Alpine Therapy Services is never going to be the company that talks about doing certain things, we’re going to be the company that actually does them. It is amazing how many great ideas sit on the sidelines, because the author fails to take action.
When we first started ATS, so many people told us “you need to have all your I’s dotted and T’s crossed BEFORE you get started”. ATS in partnership with FTS, after years of operation, still do not have all of our I’s dotted and T’s crossed. We’ve got more than we did when we started, but we are still dotting I’s and crossing T’s every single day.
One of the primary reasons people move slow, and are NOT action oriented is because its uncomfortable. It’s a lot more comfortable doing the things you have always done, the way you have always done them. A saying that we throw around at ATS is “Get comfortable, with being uncomfortable”. It is our job to create the opportunity. If we simply waited for opportunities to fall in to our lap, ATS wouldn’t exist today. Our whole company is about people creating opportunities that didn’t exist before.
We really believe that another barrier to action, is success. We can’t let success breed complacency. Success is just a comparison to yesterday. Are you better than you were yesterday? Yes? Then you are “successful”. We need to be a company that looks to tomorrow, not yesterday. That being said, we need to operate with a No Entitlement attitude. Regardless, of what happened yesterday, we’ve got to “earn it” every day.
Action always beats intention. Let’s not wait for tomorrow if it’s something that can be done today.
Core Value #5: Accountability
Responsibility is simply having tasks assigned to you. Accountability is actually completing those tasks. Everyone should be held accountable for the responsibilities that have been assigned to them. Even though this sounds like such a simple thing, this is something that really makes or breaks a business. At ATS, our path will be defined by what we do, but also what we don’t do. Companies are NOT built by people taking on a lot of responsibility. Companies are built by those people being accountable for those responsibilities.
Could you imagine an individual who grew up having no accountability for their actions? No consequences for unmet goals? It would be difficult for that individual to reach their full potential. At ATS, we want to develop all of our employees to reach their full potential. And the recipe for that is creating an environment of accountability.
As a leader in our company, it is your job to create an environment of accountability amongst your team. To be a manager or a leader in ATS, you should have already proven that you can hold yourself accountable. You have now been given the responsibility to hold others accountable as well.
The best way to create an environment of accountability is to set clear expectations. Clarity really is the greatest motivator. When those expectations are missed, we need to go by that person’s side, to help figure out why expectations were missed. We need to go by their side to help solve the problem. When communicated correctly, accountability should look a lot more like affection than punishment.
Accountability is the backbone of our organization. If we don’t have an environment that holds people accountable, we have no legs to stand on.
Jayme MW Holcombe, DPT/CEO & Owner of Alpine Therapy Services, LLC