Perfectly Imperfect Progress!

By Chris Bent, TRUST President

My grandfather lived his life in a way that was neat and orderly. He was always impeccably dressed, and their home and yard were consistently very tidy. Four years ago, after my aunt died, I found a letter my grandfather wrote to her in which he described me as a “perfect” baby. That description didn’t consider the times when my grandfather would rock me to sleep, and I would invariably leak through my cloth diaper, leaving a wet stain on his clothing. Not exactly perfect.

I’ve wrestled with “perfect” at different points in my life. I wondered if I was measuring up to the idea in the eyes of others. What I’ve come to appreciate now in my 50’s is that the literal definition of that word can be limiting, restrictive and rigid. The aim for perfection had potentially held me back when what I needed was to lean in, mix things up, get messy, and let good enough propel me forward. Heather Whelpley has written about perfectionism extensively and shared this with our TRUST book club earlier in the year! Additionally, design thinking shifts us to listening with empathy and then taking action, prototyping and fast failing. As I think about Heather’s writing, the design thinking framework and when I digest what my grandfather wrote versus what he modeled in daily living as perfect, there’s no question that messy can be a really good thing and lead to progress.

With that lens, here are a few of the TRUST’s messy moments that propelled us forward this past year:

And, importantly we made significant progress on our three prioritized goals for the year:

As we close out 2021, I would like to express my gratitude to all of you—members, sponsors, committee participants and chairs, our management and contract partners, and board and executive committee members—for exhibiting the Power of Us in big and small ways this past year. Thank you all for trying new things, taking action and learning from our mistakes to make us individually and collectively better so we can deliver on our mission!

Christine (Chris) Bent currently serves as TRUST President and is Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Prime Therapeutics. Chris was named one of the Notable Heroes of Health Care for 2020 by Twin Cities Business.