Christen Sykes Recognized for Commitment to Cardinal Innovations' Core Values

Cardinal Innovations Healthcare — October 18, 2018 — 3 min read
Christen-SykesAfter 10 years, Christen Sykes decided to leave her job as business manager for a commercial truck dealership in search of a career with more meaning. 

“Since I worked for a company whose main focus was on how much profit they could make, I decided I needed to switch gears where the organization's focus was to help others," Sykes said. 

Sykes loves volunteering and feeling like she is making a difference in people's lives, which ultimately, is what led her to Cardinal Innovations where she began working as a Project Support Professional in 2017. Earlier this year, she volunteered at a talent show for individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (IDD).

“Working for the other company wouldn't have allowed me the opportunity to see these individuals showing off their skills and abilities despite their obstacles," she said. 

Sykes was nominated for a Cardinal Leads Award by Tracy Hickman, Clinical Support Manager in Utilization Management, earlier this year. The Cardinal Leads Award recognizes employees whose work exemplifies Cardinal Innovations' five core values of accountability, courage, compassion, integrity and a pioneering spirit/attitude in ways that have a high impact on the organization, our employees and our members.

“Christen has consistently sought out opportunities to grow within Cardinal Innovations," Hickman said. “While she stays on top of her day to day functions, she also seeks out opportunities to build new skills or enhance processes. Even when she has been assigned challenging tasks to manage between multiple teams, she has done so without complaint offering suggestions for improvement to make the task easier to manage."

In her role, Sykes has helped manage clinical rounds for Utilization Management. “We streamlined the scheduling process to make it more efficient. Initially, this was supposed to be short term but the process has been effective, so I was asked to continue," she said.

Sykes said her time in the truck industry included everything from being responsible for payroll, accounting, human resources, information technology to maintaining relationships with finance lenders and vendors. She had to be organized and flexible. 

“I was able learn to work effectively with people wearing so many 'hats' at once," she said. “This experience gave me the tools needed to work well with others here at Cardinal Innovations. I was able to use organizational systems from my previous role and implement them here.

Making the decision to switch careers is one of the things Sykes is most proud of and now she enjoys knowing she's making a difference in people's lives. Sykes said the work she does at Cardinal Innovations inspires her.

“I feel like this population is often overlooked and undervalued and it's important for organizations like ours to help them reach their full potential and let their voices be heard," she said.

“Although I'm not working with members directly, I feel like the support I provide to the department allows those who are impacting their lives to do so more efficiently," Sykes said. 
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