12 Days of Christmas Stories – Day 1

Merry Christmas Eve!

Today was my dad’s birthday. He would have been 76 years young and I know this morning he would have been singing and wearing his coca cola sweatpants making breakfast with my mom J

Sometimes when I pause and think about the sadness the holidays can bring for so many of us, it consumes my thoughts and emotions. And THAT is when I choose to think about the smiles and memories I shared with those that were the lucky ones and left us early. I look around at the family I surround myself with – those born into my same family and those I choose as my family and I embrace my blessings.

We have a Vision Family, and I hold it very near and dear to my heart. If you were a fly on our walls, you’d hear us talk about it often – we know not everyone can stay here forever, and not everyone will be our employee forever – but whether you’re here now or you’ve moved on, you’ll always be a part of our family.

A few family stories for you all:

  • Isabel was hired on over a year ago, when her son came to town she was thrilled to send him our way and we were thrilled to work with him!
  • While on site at a customer, our contact said she was headed to Roseau for a family graduation this summer. We quickly connected the dots, because my mom is FROM Roseau, And if anyone is from northern Minnesota, you KNOW that the name game is a MUST.
  • This summer, we placed TRIPLETS on the job and they all got to work together and train together – everyone on our team knows them by name!
  • In January we started working with Jason – through a long process and a lot of HR stuff I’m not sharing, he said “I’ve been denied so many jobs because of my record – you are the first person to ever ask me about it and actually hear me out. Thank you” – and we were able to reply “It’s not me, it’s what we do here at Vision, One Person at a Time” J
  • Last week: “You guys are the best!…You guys are amazing, so nice, so helpful, you are just the best and I really wanted to come say hi, and celebrate the season with you!”
  • Daniel came to us on the bus line, originally from Gary, Indiana he had moved to Chicago in hopes of finding consistent work. After bouncing around a bit he moved to MN to be closer to his mom. He was early to his interview and he had taken the bus for 1.5 hours to get to us. We hit it off right away and moved quickly knowing he was in a hurry for work, and we’d lose him if we didn’t figure it out! There were 2 more times we needed to meet in person before we could have him start, and it’s a great way for him and us to prove our commitment. It was flawless. We shook hands and agreed his life was about to change and we wouldn’t let him down, and he wouldn’t let us down. He showed up his first day at work 2 hours before his shift because he didn’t want to have transportation/bus route issues. He took the bus 3 hours every day to work, and he continued to communicate and work hard and we continued to support him in his journey with performance feedback, raises, and more that I won’t get into here.
  • For each of our events last week, I lost count of Vision Family that attended – employees that were hired on, customer contacts and their husband’s/wives that joined them, significant others across the board, kiddos, and grandkids, so many newborn babies (!!!!), former Vision Rockstars, and more!

Family comes in all shapes and sizes, and it’s more than who we live with or who we fought with at the dinner table growing up. All of the stories above are about being there for one another, it’s about lifting each other up when times are tough, it’s about being dependable or sometimes simply showing up. Crying together, laughing together, being goofy together and being our authentic selves with one another. It’s about caring and extending that care to the community around you.

From the bottom of my heart, thank you for reading these stories and being a small part of our community. My pappy said I’d make a difference in this world someday, and if I put a smile on even one face or warmth in one person’s heart, I know I’ve accomplished that and you can too J

Merry Christmas to you and yours,

Heather

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