When Adam Cecil made the switch from retail to collections specialist in 2013, he didn’t know he was starting a career. A friend connected him with an interview at Parallon’s Louisville Specialty Center in the medical collections department. He says there was a huge learning curve at first. “I made sure my boss put me beside tenured people so I could pick their brains and learn better on the job,” he said.
With the help of his supervisors and coworkers, he found he was good on the phones. He set goals and met them every time. After three months, he started earning bonuses and was making way better money than he had working in a big box store.
After two years on the dialer, just married and getting ready to start a family, Cecil took a chance on a new job. As a salesman for a major frozen food distributor, he was anticipating shorter hours and greater pay.
Even though the new job kept him away from home, he still kept in touch with his former manager at Parallon, John Haworth. “It was about twice a month that we would talk,” said Cecil. “Leaving the company was very difficult, but when you’re promised better money, better schedules and all that stuff…”
It turned out the job wasn’t as advertised. “The opportunities weren’t there, the growth wasn’t there. I was lied to about my scheduling and everything.” He was driving all the time, sometimes putting in 19-hour days, outperforming all expectations, yet the money didn’t measure up. He tried to stick it out.
About two weeks before his wife, Yanett, gave birth to their son, Hayworth let Cecil know that there was just a sliver of time to come back at the rate he’d been earning before without a lapse in benefits. The choice was simple, and the same day the Cecils’ son was born, Adam started back at Parallon.
On Cecil’s first day back on the floor, senior director of operations, Tim Steadmon stopped by and checked on him. It made a real impression on Cecil that Steadmon not only knew who he was, but cared enough to ask about the personal details of his life. “I’m not just a number,” said Cecil. “That’s what I really took to heart, because not many company’s [executive team members] can do that.”
This time Cecil was able to put more of himself into the job than before. He had seen what else was out there. What he had learned at Parallon made him better equipped for opportunity elsewhere, but it didn’t prepare him for the false promises made by other companies. Cecil recognized that at Parallon, he was part of a team that wanted him to succeed, and where the opportunities were real.
Cecil just finished a year serving on the Employee Engagement Task Force (ETF), a team that liaises between upper management and hourly workers to improve employee experiences. His focus group was tasked with “The Voice of the Employee,” and worked to provide clarity to workers about how and where to bring concerns based on survey responses. The ETF also coordinates activities and volunteer opportunities and has served a huge role in getting Parallon named a Best Place to Work in Kentucky every year for more than a decade.
After two years back at Parallon, Adam Cecil has changed jobs again — but this time as the newest addition to the company’s Human Resources Department as a recruitment assistant. He’s so new to the team, he can’t say what is the best part of the job yet, but he’s eager to prove himself. “Like I said in the interview, opportunity is all I am asking for.”
HR manager, Susan Rademaker, said of Cecil, “Part of what attracted us to Adam was his ability to sell the job to people like him.” A lot of people think they wouldn’t be good at collections, but Cecil knows from experience that it’s a skill like any other.
“Don’t think of it as collections,” he tells friends and potential new-hires. He points out the great starting pay, the appreciation weeks, the small and large incentives, the excellent health coverage, the team-wide contests that keep people motivated and striving to out-earn themselves. He talks about the bonuses, the cookouts, the familial atmosphere. “They really focus on making their employees happy.”
It’s not every job that recognizes excellence. As Adam Cecil discovered, many employers are dangling a carrot on a stick, asking more and delivering less. At Parallon, though, the path to success isn’t a lonely, confusing road. It’s a team effort with employees’ needs built in. When a company believes in its people, they will rise to the occasion.
If you are ready to break out of a dead-end job, Parallon is ready to meet you. Is there a career for you at Parallon? Why not schedule an interview and find out?
Not your thing? Tell a friend about the opportunity.