President and chief executive officer
Lutheran Home and Harwood Place
Industry: Senior care
Scott McFadden is president and chief executive officer of the Lutheran Home and Harwood Place, two Wauwatosa-based facilities that offer a full spectrum of health care and other services for older adults. Here he stands by the "chalant" sign in his office, a gift from his leadership team.
"'Chalance' is not a word you will find in a dictionary, but to me, that's absurd. How can we have 'nonchalance' so deeply entrenched in our vocabulary yet not counterbalance that atrocious word with a more positive antonym? Whether officially recognized or not, chalance is a word! It's a word you will find displayed on a wall at the Lutheran Home and you will see it in the way our staff serves our residents and clients and their families.
"We have all been guilty of and victims of nonchalance – the quality of having an air of unconcern or indifference. There is rarely a time and place for nonchalance, and it should never describe the way we treat others or address their needs.
"So if nonchalance is indifference, what is chalance? Chalance is caring, caring in a way that delights everyone we touch. It's about a bias for action that puts people first. It's communicating through our words and actions: 'I hear you. I see you. I understand your need, and I am going to address it with diligence and enthusiasm.' It is caring enough to project how others want to be treated and then treating others in that manner. Wrap this concept into one, short, specific, pithy word, and you have chalance.
"What may have started as a play on words is now an axiom to live by, an affirmation for our leadership and employees. It is becoming our culture.
"Want to delight your customers? Be chalant."