Painting outside the lines….

As funding becomes harder to come by, many agencies are looking to open supplemental businesses to offset their operation costs.  At my agency, we have developed 2 businesses:  a print shop that services the community in designing and printing almost anything and an art studio.  I’d like to talk a bit more on the Studio…

This site will be open to the public in April, but we currently have the individuals we serve going there for day program services. (About 20 people rotate in and out of this site on a daily basis.)  This program was the dream of a volunteer, now current employee, Beth Kopf.  She decided to volunteer at the agency as an art instructor providing art therapy a few days a week.  Since a program like this has never been at our agency, many of the people we serve took to this immediately!  Her class size continued to grow to the point where her volunteer hours could not accommodate all the people that wanted to be a part of this.  When that happened, she was hired on full time to help our individuals continue to explore their artistic sides.

Most of our individuals found an outlet to communicate and create through this program.  Many of the pieces they have created were on display at Lewis University’s art show and some are permanent fixtures in 8 local Starbucks locations.  The acclaim received is what sparked the idea of actually opening a space to showcase all the talent we were seeing.

With this site opening soon, we are also offering this unique program to neighboring providers…we hope that their individuals want to explore their creativity as well in an environment build specifically for this.  In addition to the day program being at this site, we will be offering public art classes for kids and adults and will offer studio space for aspiring artists.  There are many local artists that have embraced our idea and have their works being displayed in the gallery already!  Here’s a few pictures of the site and the people at work:

Picture of the Art Studio  Picture of an Individual painting on a paper   Picture of Individual painting on a pottery

If you want to see more of the work we are doing here, visit the Gallery website at and visit the Gallery Facebook page to see more of the art being turned out of this great program.

Are there any of you in the Therap-verse that are doing something similar?  If so, please comment…I’d love to hear and see what all you creative people are doing!

By |2012-03-31T18:02:23+00:00March 31st, 2012|Categories: John Kincinas's Posts|Tags: , , |2 Comments

New use for a Splash Page

Typcially we’ve used agency Splash Pages as announcements for specific Therap related issues: “An updated T-Log Reference Guide has been sent via SComm, please be sure to review.”  Non-Therap related information has always been sent as a flyer within staff paychecks: “Interested in earning more money?  Individualized Services is looking for…”

Recently, however, we decided to try something new.  We created a Splash Page to let users know that we were hiring for a specific position and listed the phone number to contact if they knew anyone interested.  Since that Splash Page, I’ve received additional requests for other similar needs, “Mary Active, a resident at First Street Group Home, is looking for someone that would be interested in volunteering for …” 

So here is my next thought… when a staff sees this Splash Page, it might not interest them at first, so they click on the box “Do not show this message again.”  But later that week, they need the information that was in that Splash Page.

Wouldn’t it be beneficial for users to have the ability to access old Splash Pages?  I know that there have been times when I’ve clicked on that box, just to realize two days later that I needed the information again, for example, release notes.  Some users would be able to find them on the homepage, but others might not.

Here’s my feedback: Category-Suggestion, Summary-Access to old Splash Pages, Description-“It would be beneficial if users could access old Splash Pages that they have clicked not to be shown. There may be information within them that at that time they don’t need, but may need at a later date.”

I’ll let you know if there’s anything interesting in “My Issues” tomorrow!

Original Picture is UnavailableRenee

By |2016-11-03T10:16:02+00:00April 6th, 2010|Categories: Renee Moffatt's Posts|Tags: , , |2 Comments


Picture of Feedback Process

We all know that Therap sets a high standard for inviting Feedback. This feedback improves quality and enhances customer service. For example, have you ever noticed that no matter how many ‘dumb’ questions you ask, Therap always responds in a patient and helpful way (at least online Emoticon showing smiley face?

It’s our aim to provide great customer service to our stakeholders and also to improve the quality of our services and processes. So we’ve made it our goal to emulate Therap’s feedback standards in our own agency approach to training internal and external users at our agency.

One way we accomplish this is to reinforce anyone who asks questions and prizes if they can “stump the PA.” (That’s easier some days than others! Emoticon showing smiley face Another way we invite feedback is to survey all users. Our first survey was sent via S Comm. It asked a number of multiple choice and true/false questions asking things such as:

  • What is your position at PI?
  • How long have you used Therap?
  • What module adds the most value to your day?
  • How easy is it to enter and edit data?
  • How easy is it to find data in Therap?
  • Does Therap data entry take more or less time than paper documentation?
  • On which modules would you like more training?

It didn’t surprise us at all that Therap was well liked and easier to FIND information. What surprised us was how many staff reported that entering electronic data was actually simpler and took LESS time than writing on paper. Another unexpected nugget was the unsolicited feedback from direct care staff that Therap made them feel more trusted and empowered, because they have instant access to so much information.

A limitation of the S Comm survey is that it was terrible for analyzing data since everything is basically a narrative. We’re sending out a new survey using Survey Monkey. They offer a ‘basic’ tool you can use for free, and a more advanced tool you can use repeatedly for an annual fee. Survey Monkey allows for much better analysis and is a great time saver. We’re going to send the survey invitation via link in S Comm (one to staff and a slightly different one to guardians and state case managers).  These surveys offer valuable TREND information. We use this to improve our Therap processes and to communicate the GOOD NEWS to our Management Team and Board of Directors.   I’m interested in how you promote Feedback at your agency!

*Bryan Thayer*

Progress Industries

Newton, Iowa

By |2016-11-03T10:16:02+00:00March 18th, 2010|Categories: Bryan Thayer's Posts|Tags: , |3 Comments
Go to Top