Melissa Jenkins

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Location: Towson, MD
Industry: Physical therapy

Years in role: 2
Years at company: 2

Melissa Jenkins
Director of HR

Pivot Physical Therapy

PROCESS IMPROVEMENT: In the two years of Melissa Jenkins’ tenure as director of HR at Pivot Physical Therapy, the company’s employee head count has grown from 300 to more than 700 as a result of nine acquisitions. “While acquisitions involve the integration of payroll and benefits, they also involve helping employees adapt to the company culture,” says Jenkins. “I was able to make sure our employees were paid seamlessly and had continuity of healthcare.”

QUICK TIP: “I’ve learned that a company is not going to establish a work-life balance for you. You must make it a priority.”

EMPLOYEE IMPACT: Long hours, high patient volume and declining reimbursements make physical therapy a stressful field, Jenkins notes. “Employee retention is my biggest challenge at Pivot,” she says. To add value for therapists, Pivot has instituted a Clinic Director University, which helps future leaders among Pivot’s employees develop their business skills.

STRONG CULTURE: To Jenkins, building a strong culture is all about cultivating relationships of trust with employees. “So how do I get my managers to adopt this philosophy? … I use a lot of humor. It’s amazing how much laughter breaks down stress and builds rapport.”