Why I came back to Methodist

Kristen Dunlap
Kristen Dunlap, Human Resources Director, Corporate

By Kristen Dunlap 
Human Resources Director, Corporate
Methodist Health System 

I’ve spent my career in healthcare as a human resources professional. But I haven’t always been at Methodist Health System. I started my career at Methodist, spent some time working at two other large healthcare systems, and then came back to Methodist. It felt like coming back to my family. It was like I was back home.

Finding my passion

Growing up, I always knew that I wanted to be involved in something that would impact people’s lives. Healthcare certainly gave me that opportunity. The patient care setting was not necessarily for me, but in HR I’m able to impact lives behind the scenes. Methodist allows me to do that day in and day out. It means a lot to me because I have to have a purpose and a passion for what I do. I’m just one of those people.

Different wasn’t better

When I left Methodist to work for other health systems, I had recently completed our Emerging Leaders Program. I decided that I would venture out and try something different — working at a for-profit organization. I wanted to get that experience under my belt. But truly, I realized that I enjoyed working for Methodist so much more. The culture’s different. The people are different. Even our reason for providing healthcare is different.

What Methodist stands for, how we take care of our patients, our mission, our vision, our values — all these things align with what I want to do in my career.

I hear the same thing from others who have left and come back. They say that when you get out there, you’re not going to find a culture like ours and the warm environment we have.

That’s what attracted me to Methodist in the first place. It felt very welcoming and felt like a place where I could grow. And I have! The Emerging Leaders Program was a great experience. It taught me how to work with others. We had to collaborate on a major project and present our findings to leaders. I liked that challenge.

And still growing

I admire Methodist’s commitment to grow and serve more communities, too. When I started here, there were only two hospitals, Methodist Dallas and Methodist Charlton Medical Centers. Now there are hospitals in Mansfield, Midlothian, Richardson, Southlake, and soon in Celina.

Another reason people come back to Methodist is the stability it offers. It’s comforting to know that you’ll be supported, that somebody will have your back. That’s why you see so many people who have been here a long time.

A welcome home

But if you’re someone like me, who works at Methodist, tries other places, and then returns, you’ll be welcomed right back in. It felt so nice to hear people say, “Oh, my gosh, Kristen, you’re back!” I did come back. And I’m really glad I did.

If you’re looking for an organization that feels like home, take a look at Methodist Health System. Visit us at Jobs.MethodistHealthSystem.org.

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