Labor shortage couldn’t come at a worse time for Long Term Care and Retirement Living communities! The largest number of people is reaching retirement age than ever before and they are living longer! This is no time to be short of food serving staff. Yet with the pandemic, we’ve experienced that is exactly what communities are facing today. With the quality of life as the main focus for each of your community residents, it is imperative that you have sufficient and properly trained food servers. The problem isn’t always corrected by bigger amounts of cash in hand paychecks. It is time to be open and test new ideas.
One brilliant idea is investing in your food servers, including those who leave their desks or other duties temporarily, when your company is short-staffed and seeking new employees is a smart move. Even when actively seeking to hire new employees, training focused on the unique needs of serving older adults impresses the applicants as well as a higher wage offered.
If extending the opportunity to younger part-time help, as young as 15 years of age, having training designed to capture their attention, and improve their performance with insightful life-long skill development in place will return the investment for many years to come. Adding a scholarship fund that builds at a rate commensurate with their number of working hours will draw seriously-minded students planning their future. This will create a natural bond between student-worker and the company that is investing in their future. It would be foolish for a student to walk away from a company that believes in them.
Youth serving food to your residents carry conversant energy of promise that your residents will receive with appreciation. Would they not be considered a breath of fresh air after this long period of Covid-19 confinement? I can only imagine conversations being uplifting between young food servers and the older adults they serve with easy conversation creating a bond with the residents. Our fun, and refreshed 9-module online and on-demand Kind Dining♥ courses suit all your training needs to improve communication, team building, serving techniques, and staff camaraderie around the dining experience. Looking at this training as an investment, the company will receive a higher return for years to come from each employee demonstrating skills, gaining confidence, and knowledge of person-centered hospitality and person-directed guidelines set by State and Federal regulations. Remember that all personnel involved in serving food develop a broader perspective of their work and a greater sense of purpose. Food servers are still the company’s best asset.
It will boost your competitive edge with the other Senior Living Communities vying for that same desired employee.
B♥ Kind Tip: Meet residents’ expectations with a superbly trained food serving team!.
“I’m concerned that my company may be in trouble,” Matthew commented. “We’ve lost too many of our staff for various reasons and it isn’t easy to replace them. We’re trying different ways to encourage them to stay, including increases in pay. It should work if that is a deciding factor for someone planning to leave us to go to another community. We’re making it very public that we believe in excellent and continuous training for our employees too. Training is so important.”
Matthew and David stopped to grab a burger and a beer for lunch after another morning basketball game in a series of games they attend for exercise. Matthew picked up the conversation where they left off before the game started. He is a management staff person at an Assisted Living community as David is in another community. They often work out problems through their discussions and trading ideas.
“For the first time, we hired part-time students as food servers at age 15 which is 2 years younger than our normal requirement” David offered. “We also have a new training series where we set aside a dollar into a scholarship fund for each hour they work, hoping the incentive will keep them focused and faithful to our company. They really respond to the training. Their energy and enthusiasm overflow in a notable way with our residents. Our residents give us positive comments. I’m excited about it and much prefer it to robots. It’s like an investment in our future to support a youngster with dreams and ideals. I’ll keep you posted on how that is working. I expect to be giving you stories of success. How is that for confidence?” David chuckled because he was excited about this idea he strongly suggested at a meeting a few months ago and wanted desperately for it to succeed.
Matthew replied with sincere interest. “I agree with you on using robots only as a last, desperate measure. An investment in youthful energy sounds much more promising. I would be proud of our company’s involvement in helping young adults to more purposeful education while benefiting our community at the same time. I’m going to bring that idea up at our next meeting. Tell me more.”
Kind Dining♥ training series reinforces the long-term positive results that come from educating your employees with interpersonal, and technical skills, and smarter work habits. Continued practicing and reinforcing what they have learned will follow up with years of caring, confidence, and competent employees from a small investment in a one-of-a-kind training series that hits the mark and improves performance. It works!
B♥ Kind Tip: Building confidence in your employees through training is a smart investment.
”Well, I could hardly wait to call you to tell you that my daughter Kate had a class at school in Civility this week. It referred to last August being National Win with Civility Month.” Dolores was talking with her brother Robert. She often discussed problems that arose in the retirement living community where she worked. He enjoyed giving his little sister advice. “Someone must have overheard our conversation last week.” She laughed.
He responded by asking, “Did you tell her that we talked about this?” Dolores thought about that for a moment before saying, “I haven’t had a chance yet, but it is on my list. Maybe it is better for us to discuss it after it settles in her mind. Then we can compare notes. I want to know what this instructor brought to the surface.”
“Great,” Robert said. “I’m curious and want to hear what she learned.”
Just the previous week Dolores told her brother about a newly hired food server in her community. He supposedly had several years’ experience. For a newcomer stepping into an established situation, he was rude and loud like he was trying to get everyone’s attention. The little she witnessed of his interaction with the residents revealed a man who spoke condescendingly to them. That was a big no-no in her style. She was hoping to see positive results after his training session and then the employee group discussion that followed. Hopefully he would get the message and not be let go because of behavior attitudes.
Dolores was conscious of the freshen-up training she received a year ago. They practiced conversations with omitting words that offend others that we may unintentionally use and how to apologize if we happen to do just that. A simple, “I’m sorry for what I did, it was wrong, let me make it right” was perfect. She enjoyed learning that they all need to be courteous to coworkers, too. Civility and courtesy were not for residents only. That training session seemed to help most of her coworkers who worked more like a team than before.
Kind Dining♥ training emphasizes the importance of civility and courtesy in everyday surroundings that will carry over to a person’s interactions in personal life. This conscious decision to show civility creates a positive attitude for one’s self that leads to a better life for all who participate. No one is born with these skills but they can easily be learned with training and practice. Many people aren’t even aware that what they consider teasing is most often being rude. Many comments intended as jokes to make others laugh are truly being cruel to someone. Fortunately, bringing these thoughts into discussion sessions gives a new outlook on one’s conscious behavior. It is another step in improving your life.
B♥ Kind Tip: Practice is what it takes.