“I took a job as a nurse’s aide while attending nursing school. My initial intent was to make money, but I discovered so much more. I found that working with older adults was challenging, humorous and fulfilling. After I graduated nursing school, I knew that I was going to stay in geriatrics.”
It is this very mindset that has helped shape Michelle Posch into the eldercare manager she is today, and it is the reason why she has been named the LeadingAge PA 2023 Manager of the Year. Posch went from taking a job because she needed some extra cash to put her through nursing school to finding the job of her dreams.
It is that open-mindedness, in fact, that has made Posch a great manager. She is always willing to see things from other people’s point of view, and she is definitely open to change.
As a Regional Manager of Staff Development, you are always kept on your toes, and Posch has a very hands-on approach that is appreciated by many. She is not afraid to get her feet wet, and she is willing to stand in and help when the situation calls for it.
“Posch supervises a team that instructs more than 300 nurses, nurses’ aides and many other frontline employees across four Eastern Pennsylvania counties,” Phoebe Ministries said. “She and her team also play a significant role in new employee orientation.”
Posch is also someone who is willing to take initiative. From the way she trained potential employees as Temporary Nursing Assistants during the pandemic to the way she volunteered to work in COVID units to her ability to help evacuate residents during a flood, she is willing to take charge and adapt.
She stepped in and took over the TNA program throughout the pandemic, making things easier to track online and run much more smoothly.
“Michelle was able to accomplish this with amazing speed and efficiency, resulting in Phoebe hiring close to 100 TNAs to work on our four campuses,” said Michell Staska-Pier, Vice President of Health Care Services for Phoebe Ministries.
Talk about someone who can step up when needed most. Posch does this day in and day out, and that is why she is such an irreplaceable presence at Phoebe.
Posch leads by example in many ways as well. Many times when you get to a leadership position, it might become easy to be complacent and not be nearly as hands-on. But for Posch, she is the complete opposite.
“Michelle is amazing,” Staff Development Instructor Vanessa Shutt exclaimed. “During the pandemic, it was not unusual for me to walk down the hall at Richland and see Michelle on a med cart. She will step in whenever and wherever needed.”
Posch does not use her job title to put up barriers, and that is because she truly cares about the job she does. She cares deeply about her residents and her coworkers, and that is why so many people look up to her.
Posch is someone who is willing to teach without hesitation either. She wants to see everyone succeed, and that is why she makes herself out to be someone you can walk up to at any given time.
“Michelle is always approachable and encourages individual leadership,” Staff Development Instructor for Phoebe Allentown Kim Doutt said. “She fosters reliability on each other by demonstration.”
Posch places an emphasis on the importance of teamwork. She knows that for a team to run smoothly, you have to be able to trust one another and hold each other accountable. You also have to be able to count on your leader to take initiative and step in when need be, which is something Posch does well.
Posch has a servant’s heart, as she shows her selfless nature every day she walks into Phoebe. She is always willing to help other departments and is willing to help get tasks done, and this is not something that goes unnoticed by her colleagues.
“Michelle always steps up to the plate to assist Phoebe in any way, often taking on tasks and motivating her team to achieve goals,” Staska-Pier said. “Some of the specific projects she and her team undertook was working with temporary nursing assistants and bringing on student nurses for clinical rotation.”
There are managers you want to work for and with and managers you don’t, and it is pretty clear which one Posch falls under. It feels like a harped upon point, but her willingness to step up to the plate at any time warrants a lot of repetition because it is a big part of who she is.
“Regardless of the task or timeline for a project she always completes it in a timely manner,” Doutt stated. “She keeps everyone up to date and in the loop with what is going on in the department.”
On top of everything else, Posch is always aware of the circumstances. She can give you updates about what is going on, and that is amazing.
What is even more amazing is the fact that we have gotten this far without talking about Posch’s interactions with her residents. She loves her residents and makes them a priority, and that is a big reason why being the leader that she is comes so naturally to her.
For Posch, it is resident care first. Always.
Posch wants her residents to have the best care and the best time at Phoebe, and she makes it a point to get to know them on a personal level and find out what she can do to make their living situation the best it can be.
“Working in senior care is a career choice that I have never regretted,” Posch stated. “No two days are the same. Being able to hear and share experiences with older adults is often the highlight of my day.”
Posch truly loves what she does, and her management abilities are second to none. That is why she is the LeadingAge PA 2023 Manager of the Year.