Claremore Leadership Series – an interview with radiology manager Leslie Maner

There are three things Hillcrest Hospital Claremore radiology manager Leslie Maner, R.T. (R) (M), ARRT, says she looks for in potential new team members that stand out among other qualities and skills. They are three things that embody how she delivers care for patients and leads her team – driving not only the patient experience, but also the employee experience.  “The most important priorities are patient care, patient satisfaction and teamwork,” Leslie explains. “When those are your focus, your skills will improve and you’ll get better at your job, because you’re holding yourself up to a standard to do your best every day.”

Leslie grew up knowing that she wanted to work in health care explaining, “The medical field attracts people who want to make a difference and want to help people.” She wanted to help people and chose radiology, because of the hands-on nature of the work and amount of time spent with patients. Leslie also recognized opportunities within the field. “You’re not stuck in a box. There are many aspects to radiology such as CT, MRI and ultrasound.”

Ten years ago, when a position for a mammography tech opened at Hillcrest Hospital Claremore, which was then called Claremore Regional Hospital, Leslie admits she didn’t know much about the hospital. Claremore was close to home, however. “I had done a lot of PRN (as needed) work in radiology,” she says. “I knew I liked the rural hospital environment. When I came for my interview, I remember everyone was very friendly and welcoming.” Leslie not only had a good feeling about the opportunity, but about her career after accepting the position. “It felt like everyone wanted me to succeed.”

Today, Leslie says the same is true for new team members, even new graduates. “Anyone who has the desire to work on a team and knows that patient care and patient satisfaction are the most important priorities will feel supported here,” she says. “I can say from my PRN work, Hillcrest Hospital Claremore truly is a family. Everyone from the CEO to CFO and managers are on the floors interacting with the staff. There is a feeling here that we are all part of the same team. That is so hard to explain, but it is priceless.”

As a team member, Leslie says she was comforted by the care and support she received from the hospital when she was caring for husband and navigating the world of health care from the “other” side. “People would come up to me and say they wanted to know how they could help,” she recalls. “They would tell me, ‘We’ll cover for you.’” Her team and her hospital truly were (and are) an extension of her family. They were there for her when she needed it, something she never forgets.

“I find that I put myself on the patient or caregiver side always,” she adds of that experience when working with patients. “That experience really put me in their shoes. Until you go through that, you see things every day that are normal or routine for you, but when you are on the patient side, they aren’t normal for you.”

Working in health care has its challenges, but at the end of the day, there is no other place that Leslie would want to be than at Hillcrest Hospital Claremore. “Every day I am making a difference,” she says. “I am so fortunate and blessed to work here and to be a part of this team.”