Zett Small grew up in a family where acts of service to the community and volunteerism were the norm. Her biggest influence was her brother, Gabe, who inspired a strong sense of teamwork and altruism. Upon graduating from American University in Washington, D.C. with a major in Political Science, Zett moved between government and nonprofit work for several years, including AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps.
“This is when I had the chance to launch my love for working with nonprofits and volunteering,” says Zett.
It would be years later that Zett would take on a Volunteer Coordinator position for another hospital in Houston’s Medical Center. While there, she witnessed Texas Children’s growth first-hand and hoped to one day be a part of our organization. That opportunity came when she saw a position open for a Senior Volunteer Coordinator at The Woodlands. Zett immediately applied.
Now, after five years with Texas Children’s, Zett sits down with us in this week’s One Amazing Team Spotlight to show us how far compassion can get you, as well as her promise for tomorrow.
What do people not know/realize about your job?
It takes a lot of planning and work behind the scenes to run a department of volunteers. Most people don’t realize how many volunteers we have and in what placements. We act as Human Resources for volunteers with onboarding and compliance requirements for Joint Commission. People also may not realize how incredibly generous The Woodlands community is! In December alone we received 92 in-kind donations.
What is your day-to-day like in your current role?
Every day is different. I could be training volunteers or leading tours, meeting a community member with a donation, or covering the welcome desks at the entrance. I get to do so many different types of roles and I love training and engaging with volunteers, working with donors, and event planning.
What is your favorite part of the role?
Meeting all the amazing people. I have the chance to work with the most inspiring people in our community – our volunteers and our donors. It is a very positive and uplifting job. I also can’t say enough about our Woodlands team. The Woodlands campus is very special in that we are truly a family. We pull together so well and truly amplify unity at this campus. In my role I get to collaborate with so many departments in various service lines. When recently touring a new staff member they remarked, “Wow, you really know everyone!”
Tomorrow, Together represents Texas Children’s commitment to creating a bright future for our employees and our mission. What is your commitment for the future?
My hope for the future is to improve patient experience by growing the volunteer program here in The Woodlands. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, we had 230 volunteers and were on track for huge growth. I would love to have the premiere volunteer program in the country for pediatric hospitals. I see the relaunch of volunteers as a way to get back on track and support Texas Children’s initiative of Tomorrow, Together.
What is next for you in your career?
In January, I started my Master of Healthcare Administration with Texas Tech University. My five years with Texas Children’s has taught me that I truly love this organization and I want to grow with it. I hope this degree will help me gain important knowledge that will help me grow into management at Texas Children’s.
When outside of work, Zett enjoys her family to the fullest, usually cheering on her two young sons at sports events or cuddling her rescue dog Izzy. Zett’s compassion and drive has made her one of Texas Children’s super stars and continues to push her to find the joy in her job and the people she works with.
“I feel so lucky that I have a job that allows me to continue to make an impact every day,” said Zett.
Texas Children’s is always looking to welcome in new team members and help them grow. Get to know us more, search our open positions and become part of One Amazing Team.