Healthy outlook Featured

10:19am EDT June 28, 2005

Gwen Duncan-James, the president and CEO of Gareda Nursing & Home Health Services, has a simple goal: Be the best.

Duncan-James, who founded Duncan Nurses Registry in 1972 before starting Gareda in 1980, made sure right from the start that the company's strategy was definite in purpose and adaptable to the special environment the company works in. Gareda provides homemaking and nursing care services for elderly, disabled and infirm citizens in the Chicagoland area, administered through a multitude of service contracts with various state and local agencies.

Duncan-James also wanted to make Gareda the employer of choice in nursing and home health care services in the state. The company provides in-house training for all field staff and supports educational opportunities outside of the company, enabling employees to obtain additional skills and qualifications to enhance their professional growth.

The company's people initiatives have enabled it to continue to enjoy a low employee turnover rate in this highly competitive industry. Duncan-James is actively involved in the recruiting and hiring policies and practices at Gareda.

She has instilled a culture that encourages growth and instills a sense of family.

While her competitors have been terminating employees because of cutbacks by the city of Chicago due to budget deficits, Gareda has taken advantage of this opportunity by adding new clients and has even increased the number of employees in the last two years.