Then his thoughts turned to his co-workers. Stan joined Bristol-Myers Squibb right after completing his doctorate degree in 1989. Today, he works as a research fellow in Drug Discovery Research. He’s spent his 30-year career hunting for ways to unlock cures to some of the most difficult diseases, including cancer. He had been in pursuit of this devastating illness his entire professional life and suddenly, he was facing it head on. He wasn’t sure how he would be able to still do the work he loved.
One of the first people Stan talked to at work was Pat Newman, a project coordinator with R&D Learning. "Stan is not the first Bristol-Myers Squibb employee to become a patient, but each time it happens it sharpens our core mission," she said recently.
“It really focuses your attention on the purpose of your job,” she recalled. “It reinforced my dedication to do the best job that I could possibly do.”
In fact, Stan’s entire department looked for ways to support him during six months of treatments. They adjusted the temperature in his work area; installed extra hand-sanitizers throughout his department; scaled back his in-office hours, picked up extra assignments and shuttled him to the office.
When he was done treatments, the department celebrated his success and recovery. They even donated an infusion chair in Stan’s name to the cancer center where he was treated. Finally, they presented him with a plaque reading “Who Are You Working For?" Stan. It featured the faces of dozens of his R&D colleagues from Bristol-Myers Squibb sites across the U.S.
“That picture was the greatest! I was humbled by the ways my colleagues assisted me,” he recalls.