Highlighting HR: Dianne’s story

Last Modified: 4/05/2022

Dianne only

If you’ve ever worked for a company, chances are you’ve heard the term “human resources,” but do you know what the job actually entails? To better understand this essential division, we asked Dianne Potter, manager human resources, to answer our questions regarding her role within Parkview Health and the exceptional, often unsung efforts of her department.

How long have you worked in human resources?

I have been a part of Parkview Human Resources for 36 years. I started as a recruiter, became an employment manager in 1996, and eventually moved to human resources manager for Parkview Whitley Hospital in 2000. Over the next 18 years, I bounced back and forth between Allen County, Parkview Whitley, and Parkview Warsaw locations before landing back at Parkview Hospital Randallia in 2018. Now, I am on the verge of retirement, and it’s a little bittersweet to be ending my career at the same location I began all those years ago.

What can you share about your team and working in human resources? 

My peers are an amazing group of people. We care so much and want to do the right thing for our staff and the hospital system. We take the time to examine a situation from all angles before rolling out a new process, implementing a new procedure or enacting a new policy. Our job is to ensure it’s the right fit to meet the needs of our co-workers, a fact that was made even more evident over the last two and a half years. It’s no secret that COVID-19 presented us with some unique challenges. We did our best to pivot and rise above it. In fact, during the pandemic, our jobs changed dramatically. We found ourselves working at the vaccine clinic while doing our regular jobs and helping create and implement programs to support our colleagues. Although we found ourselves doing work that wasn’t normal for us, we always had a positive attitude and were ready to help wherever needed.

What does your department do to assist the Parkview Health system?

What don’t we do!? Honestly, sometimes it feels like we are one of Parkview’s best-kept secrets. Human resources does so many things in the background. We spend a lot of time ensuring we offer comparable salary ranges and benefits to entice and retain the right candidates. Our talent acquisitions team spends many hours recruiting and filling positions. We even take the time to make sure our colleagues feel appreciated. The holiday cookies sent out last December? That was us! We have a hand in a little bit of everything, but ultimately, we try to be wherever we need to be and do whatever we can to support our co-workers so that they can provide excellent care to every person every day.

What are some of the biggest changes you’ve noticed over the years as Parkview has grown?

There are many answers to this question, but I think technology has been the most significant change and had the most impact over my 36-year career. When I started, we did everything by way of paper applications. I remember having to sort applications constantly. So much so that eventually, as my son got older, I taught him how to help, searching for specific keywords and typing speeds. Yes, you heard me right, we used to administer typing tests, but those are all but obsolete these days. Now, instead of piles of paperwork, everything’s online, and it is so much easier and faster to access information.       

What motivates you in your current position?

My biggest motivation throughout my time at Parkview was knowing that I had an impact on the lives of my co-workers and their families. Sometimes, I’ve had to make tough choices and/or recommendations in my various roles. It wasn’t always easy, and I never made them lightly, but no matter the situation, I tried to see all sides of the story before making any final decisions.

Dianne and son

What do you enjoy most about your job?

I get asked this question a lot, but honestly, I love what I do. It’s so rewarding to see co-workers I’ve helped hire 30 years later still thriving in their role at Parkview. But one of the greatest moments in my career was watching my son get hired as a nurse recruiter. I remember going to a job fair together. It was one of his first events as a Parkview human resources employee. We took a selfie together in our Parkview jackets to celebrate his achievement and the day. I still display that picture in my office because it was such a special moment.

What’s the most challenging part of your position?

When working in human resources, you never know what each day will bring. We constantly encounter new challenges and learn new things. I might come in with a plan in the morning, but then a coworker walks in with an issue, a surveyor drops in, or a leader stops by to chat about something, then suddenly your whole day shifts. We are constantly pivoting and adjusting, so I try to prepare for the unexpected.

What’s one thing that would surprise people about your role or human resources in general?

I don’t think that people realize the amount of time, effort, energy and thought that goes into making decisions that will affect co-workers. When we tackle a task, we try to think of every little detail, and sometimes discussions around an item can last for days, weeks, or even months before we roll it out because we want to do it in the best possible way.

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