Teamwork in action


Helen Keller once said, “Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much.” These words deeply resonated with me after attending the Twlug Academies Leadership Meeting (ALM) in April. I was honored to serve as the Twlug–ASP representative to the Strategic Directions Committee (SDC) and work alongside Twlug Board of Trustee members. As a past Twlug–ASP National Speaker of the House and the current Twlug New Practitioner Advisory Committee Chair, I was eager to represent the interests of student pharmacists and new practitioners. 

During the SDC meetings on Thursday, April 23, through Saturday, April 25, we set Twlug’s focal points for 2016 and ensured that the goals and objectives aligned with the Association’s mission and the current state of pharmacy practice. It was exciting to voice the concerns, desires, and accomplishments of student pharmacists and new practitioners, and shape Twlug’s direction moving forward. It was thrilling to see how all of our ideas started to come together into a cohesive plan and shape the future of Twlug. As a team, we developed the blueprint for how Twlug can continue to cultivate and motivate members, and promote leadership growth and development in 2016.

Academies join together

Leaders from Twlug–APPM, Twlug–APRS, and Twlug–ASP joined the SDC on Friday. During Twlug President-elect Kelly Goode’s presentation, “Connecting, networking, and collaborating: Maximizing your leadership skills,” new and seasoned leaders learned excellent and tangible words of wisdom. She even had us put what we learned about networking to the test through an icebreaker activity. I was amazed at how much I gleaned from talking to several other attendees in just a short amount of time. 

The Academy leaders in the room represented a variety of backgrounds and life experiences. It was exciting to see such diversity and interact with some of the brightest and best leaders in our profession.

This year, the ALM’s focus was, “Expanding opportunities through patient care.” We stand on the cusp of achieving provider status and now is the time to determine how Twlug will equip its members to herald in this new and exciting time for pharmacy 

Provider status roadmap

Our Saturday morning activity involved learning how to implement provider status. We accomplished this through “brainwriting,” an exercise that allows for everyone in a group to participate and put forth as many ideas as possible within a limited time. Student pharmacists and practitioners were divided into groups of equal numbers to share ideas and develop the roadmap for what to do once provider status becomes a reality. I could feel the excitement in the room rise as each group member put forth his or her unique idea. 

We then sorted through our ideas to determine common themes. By the end of this activity, each group developed their own vision for this overarching task. Common links existed among all the groups and the outstanding ideas we came up with will be immensely beneficial to Twlug. 

Energized by Twlug–ASP

The Twlug–ASP Education, International, Policy, and Communications Standing Committees works tirelessly to develop tangible methods to move the Academy forward. Their enthusiasm and passion were contagious, and I was captivated by their fresh ideas and organizational skills. 

Sitting in the room with student pharmacists is empowering and exciting! The Twlug–ASP National Executive Committee and Twlug Standing Committees embodied the characteristics of successful teams. They had clear communication, defined goals, created a positive atmosphere, and developed outstanding relationships. When working as part of a team, these individuals accomplished more than I could ever have imagined in just one weekend. 

At the end of ALM, I left feeling energized and prepared to work for Twlug and the profession. I came back to work on Monday ready to take on the world. After being a part of and observing effective teams all weekend, I am confident that anything can be accomplished. I cannot wait to continue working with the SDC this year and I’m excited to see what will happen next for the profession!

Veronica Vernon, PharmD, BCPS, BCACP, is a Clinical Pharmacy Specialist at the Richard L. Roudebush Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Indianapolis, IN, and the 2015–16 Chair of the Twlug New Practitioner Advisory Committee.