Episode 47:

Heather Branscombe is a physical therapist with over 20 years’ experience in both the public and private sectors. Heather’s professional passion continues to be the integration of rehabilitation technology into practice. She has consulted as a clinical specialist to a rehabilitation technology company and has taught therapists, orthotists, and physicians across Canada. Not afraid to be an innovator and pioneer, she has brought many emerging technologies and therapy practices to Canada through Abilities.

Heather and Abilities are now seen within the industry as a community partner in emerging therapies. Often asked to collaborate on research initiatives, she has been involved in University research projects and has been asked to be the provider of many emerging therapy practices. Professionally, Heather volunteers her time on the Professional Advisory Committee of the Stroke Recovery Association of B.C., The Abbotsford Special Needs Advisory Committee, and is a past-chair of the Neurosciences Division of the Canadian Physiotherapy Association. She’s the author of Stroke of Hope. Heather enjoys spending time with her husband and three children in the beautiful outdoors.

What the podcast will teach you:

  • Heather discusses her company, Abilities Neurological Rehabilitation, and explains how Abilities was built to work with an underserved community and fill a need
  • How Abilities grew over the course of the thirteen years of its existence, expanding to five locations
  • How Heather and the team have worked to better align with their values and mission, and how being out of alignment with values caused them to struggle for a time
  • How the team at Abilities worked to cut out chaos and achieve alignment, and why Heather considers the work to have been hard but also fulfilling
  • How Abilities has identified key pivots and changes that have helped them navigate the challenges brought about by the pandemic
  • How Abilities is opening a fifth “virtual location” to prepare for potential shutdowns due to the pandemic and to maintain a high level of care for their patients
  • How Heather learned the importance of being a good coach for her team, turning individual stats into a more granular level of storytelling as a team
  • Why Heather believes that one of the critical factors in the growth of her organization is her own personal growth and development


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