Spotlights, not microscopes

Tuesday, April 30, 2002

In Las Vegas last month, I had dinner with a couple of HME providers who said they were not going to nominate their companies for the HME Excellence Awards. These guys run prestigious companies. Probably, though they didn't say as much, they're turning decent profits. (How else do you become that facile with a wine list at Olive's?) One guy said he'd thought about throwing his hat in the ring, but reckoned that a couple of rough quarters might put him out of the running.

I can't remember the other guy's explanation because I was working on my appeal for reconsideration. I explained that the winners of the HME Excellence Awards would not necessarily be the companies that tally the most impressive numbers, just as the most likely to succeed in high school is not necessarily the student with the highest SATs.

The best provider is the one who exhibits a multitude of strengths, who runs a company his employees want to work at, who is committed to high quality care, who is involved in the industry for the betterment of home healthcare, and yes, who turns decent numbers.

The home medical equipment industry doesn't have a great reputation. It's an industry that's been made muddy by its silt, and that wants a little distillation. The HME Excellence Awards won't filter the silt out of its reputation. But better a spotlight than a microscope, right?

My counter appeal won these two providers over (though we're still waiting for their applications). June 15 is the deadline for submissions. I want to urge every company that takes pride in the work it does to nominate itself. As a famous Bostonian once said: if not now when; if not you, who. HME