Whether good or bad, most people see turning age 40 as a major milestone. But when a successful company hits the Big 4-0, it’s definitely a cause for celebration. As Genex prepares to hit that mark later this year, we kickoff our 2018 Inside Workers’ Comp series with Genex COO Delphia Frisch, who shares her reflections on Genex’s history and impact on the industry.
Tom Kerr (TK): I’m Tom Kerr. 2018 marks a major milestone for Genex Services as we celebrate our 40th anniversary. A lot has happened in those four decades for this company and in the industries we serve. And in today’s Inside Workers’ Comp, COO Delphia Frisch helps us gain a better understanding of Genex’s growth and history.
Delphia, thanks for joining us today
Delphia Frisch (DF): Thank you, Tom.
TK: To start, tell us about your career at Genex.
DF: I have been in this lead operating role at Genex for now almost 23 years. Previous to this position, if there's anyone that can remember that, I was the regional vice president of the West. Even prior to that, which is quite some time ago, I started my career with Genex in the Maryland and Virginia markets, with both area sales manager and branch management roles.
So, I’ve clearly have experience and exposure with what I think are a vast number of key roles within our organization.
TK: What are some ways Genex has adapted to changes in our industry?
DF: Obviously, a company that does not adapt, does not stay in business long. And Genex could not be experiencing 40 years as an industry‑leading firm, had we not evolved with strength or actually rolled with some of the punches along the way.
By behavior, we stay close to the workers' comp trends. We try to stay nimble and creative in our service delivery. Most important, we stay close to the customer and the injured worker in every scenario.
TK: What would you consider to be the three most impactful moments in Genex’s history?
DF: This is an interesting question. The first one would be when early Genex leadership focused on a fully national service expansion related to our service delivery. Most founders build lifestyle businesses and really are not willing to make the cost investment related to growth, but Peter [Madeja] and others were committed to a national footprint early in our history.
No. 2, in terms of impactful moments, when we organically developed or acquired the full continuum of managed care services beyond what we're known for as our core capability with field case management. The market differentiation that has come with an end‑to‑end solution, I think has resulted in being a brand catalyst for us.
No. 3, I would say I believe when senior management, along with our investors, became owners of Genex and we continued the commitment to being the employer of choice in our service niche, with very rich 401(k) program, strong benefits, career pathways, etc.
So, if I had to go back and look, back over these 35 to 40 years, those would probably be what I think are pretty cathartic moments.
TK: What does this 40th anniversary mean to you?
DF: It means our collective colleagues have built an enterprise that today remains highly relevant, sustainable, strong. We, together, have transcended time and its evolving needs.
The statistics are shockingly low for companies and specific brands that withstand the challenges and the winding pathways over 40 years. That says something right there, in terms of us being able to experience that 40 years.
Further, staying curious, non‑complacent, and energized about the future possibilities maintains a company's currencies.
TK: How has Genex changed the industries in which we work?
DF: Interesting question. I hope we've been successful in helping to set the industry standards on all things related to disability and workers' comp, without being insular, or even arrogant. Hopefully, conversely, we've listened and learned as much as we teach and set those standards. Then watch for disruptors, and learn something from them along the way.
TK: What's one thing about Genex that most people don't know, but it should be recognized?
DF: Perhaps that we are comfortable being a group of leaders whereby experience, capability, and killer strength speaks for itself.
Not immaterially, that is based upon our company's stellar performance, the service outcomes we achieve with our injured and disabled population, and then, further, the long tenure of Genex employment we pridefully achieve with all of our colleagues.
TK: Thanks, Delphia. In our next Inside Workers’ Comp, we’ll look at some of the challenges 2018 brings to the industry. Until then, thanks for listening.