Iowa Specialty Hospital

Notes from Steve

April 1, 2024

I’m in Chicago this week for my annual healthcare conference. Been doing the same one since 1989 (longer than a lot of you have been born, which depresses me to no end). I usually get stressed and anxious about traveling to an unknown big city; there are too many people and lots of noise … but I’m comfortable going to this specific conference because I know it. I go to the same hotel, same airport, get cabs - no issue - and I’ve learned a little bit more each time … Uber, kiosk stuff regarding all registration, bowties are again in fashion, and people are a lot more social post-pandemic. I saw a lot of smiling and chatting-it-ups in the elevators this week, more than ever before. 

All of this is faith restoring. People don’t have to be nice, and things don’t have to change - we’ve lived forever without AI and kiosks … but life changes and that’s good. If I had a choice, I’d prefer to have real, live people wait on me as opposed to the QR way of life, but that’s not reality. My theory is that people are nicer because the “computer way of life” is making their work less, and they have more time to be nice. Or they’re just nicer because it’s a better way to go through life. Either way, it’s better.

On my way to the airport - my cab almost hit another car. My driver screamed loudly, then told me it was a UBER driver who was focusing on his phone and not the road, and then he proceeded to slam UBER drivers for the next mile or so. I asked him what the difference was in training, safety, and the future of cabs in Chicago. He was definitely biased towards the licensed cabs in the city. I was thinking about our conversation and didn’t say it because I was done talking, but I wondered if the increase in competition forced the cabs to “raise their tide,” improve their game, and be better … but as I said, I didn’t mention it because he was still cranked about the UBER DRIVER. 

Change is inevitable, but usually not all at once. If we are aware of the change, we can notice (be conscious and aware) and work on being better. Competition forces us to do better, and if we take the higher road … which is always hard … we will make the world a better place. 

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