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TOP WORKPLACES 2015

For wellness agency, worker contentment comes second only to customer satisfaction

NO. 1 MIDSIZE EMPLOYER: OHIOANS HOME HEALTHCARE

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Ohioans Home Healthcare employees Jen Williams, left, director of marketing; Kim Schmeltz, operations manager; James Pierce, quality assurance manager; Josh Adams, CEO; Jen Wood, customer service; and Shelly Williams, quality assurance manager.

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When it comes to providing home health-care services, Josh Adams believes the key to success is two-fold.

“Customer satisfaction is first, but employee satisfaction is a close second,” said Mr. Adams, owner and chief executive officer of Ohioans Home Healthcare, a Toledo-based home care agency that provides skilled and unskilled services in 17 counties in Ohio and Michigan.

Good home health-care employees care passionately about helping others, Mr. Adams explained. But when that desire to help is stifled, employees become frustrated.

That’s why Ohioans does its best to ensure its workers — nurses, nursing aides, therapists, and social workers — can do their best, Mr. Adams said.

That business philosophy enabled the company to finish first in the midsize companies category in the Toledo area for The Blade's 2015 Top Workplaces competition. In just four years, the company has grown from five employees to 130, plus another 50 that it contracts with on a regular basis.

“I think generally our staff truly cares about patient care and what they’re doing. Taking care of the patient and wanting the patient to get better, to thrive in their homes, is what they're about,” Mr. Adams said.

To maintain that attitude, Ohioans — which has offices in Toledo, Sandusky, Bryan, and Lambertville — works hard to empower its employees.

“We continue to try to get input from our staff. We take the input and and advice and we put it to use. We don’t pretend to know the right answers,” Mr. Adams said.

Kim Schmeltz, company director of operations, said that an example of empowerment are the team meetings the company holds with employees to assess patient treatment.

“You form an opinion and then a plan, and after you’ve made a decision, you let people know why you made that decision,” she said.

Ohioans was formed under another owner in 2007 and was approved by Medicare in 2009.

Mr. Adams, who graduated from college in 2006 and whose family was heavily involved in home health care, bought the company in 2011 and set out immediately to grow the company.

His first move toward growth was to increase marketing efforts.

Jen Williams, the company’s head of marketing, said company representatives, who meet with families at hospitals, nursing homes, and other health facilities, play a key role in educating clients what to expect from home health care.

“For some, it’s their first time” having home health services, she said.

Mr. Adams said that once the company takes on a new client, the focus shifts to providing quality care.

“I get up every day and think about our clients and how they can have the best experience they can possibly have. And I think every one of our staff members feels the same,” he said.

Jennifer Wood, Ohioans’ customer service director, said what makes the company a good place to work is that its leadership is always accessible.

“I’ve worked for other companies where the [leadership] was isolated and you almost had to make appointment to see them,” she said. But that isn’t so at Ohioans, and that makes employees feel valued, she added.

Mr. Adams said he’s known from the beginning “that happy employees equals happy patients, and I think that's very important to us.”

Contact Jon Chavez at: jchavez@theblade.com or 419-724-6128.

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