It is time to stand back and examine where your budget from last year succeeded your desires or failed them. In these times of severe labor shortages, if you have lost employees this past year you need to know why and how you can prevent losing employees ever again. Did you provide them with the best training possible, not only when they were first hired, but ongoing education that builds their confidence and creates a sense of ownership in the company and community? On the job responsibilities are not learned in a week nor are they learned by a manager handing them a list and saying ‘these are your duties.’
Better than your college degree earned in 4 years, on-the-job training is ongoing, learning new ideas, practicing what you learned last week, and continuing to seek ways to work smarter and with purpose. It is about learning civility, caring, respecting residents, all staff, and your coworkers. Deeply learning your work brings about a feeling of being a part of the organization, not just working for it; it is about forming relationships with residents and coworkers, and knowing your job well enough that you are comfortable with suggesting new ways and better ideas. Does the administration ask opinions of the food serving team from all departments when a dilemma arises in their area? Do your food servers from all departments take pride in their work? Are your residents happy to see the food servers, not just the food they bring? Has anyone ever asked your residents if they do?
Kind Dining♥ unique, exclusive training curriculum combined with interactive exercises shows employees the way to a deeper education that they can call on, with confidence, to solve complications that arise in their area of work. They will learn how to build connections with residents and to build respect for them also. A change of attitude happens when certainty forms within. Self-assurance creates leaders that handle situations with ease and it creates employees that wish to remain with a company that respects them enough to offer the training they can use every day to better their lives and the lives around them. Learning the specifics that surround their work even if they are not directly part of their daily work, increases their knowledge so they can react to the overall picture of their job. It will also generate stronger, respectful working relationships with coworkers. This results in food serving teams that can overcome any difficulty and be ambassadors for the organization and community to be proud to call its own.
B♥ Kind Tip: Is your training limited to ‘here’s a list of your duties’?
Sometimes in the rush to get our work responsibilities completed in a timely manner, we overlook what is the most important part of our job in a senior care community. It is the residents who have changed their lives completely, often selling the family homestead, leaving family, friends, and relatives behind in the neighborhood, at an advanced age, to start a new way of living in your community. It may take an extended time period for many to adjust to this new way of life among strangers they hope will become friends. Some folks will be super shy about asking questions unless they are encouraged by the people whose faces they see every day. These very faces become so familiar that they learn to trust them. A prevalent thought in many older adults’ minds is that they “don’t want to be a burden” to anyone. That includes people who surround them in their new home, who are trained, can be trusted, depended on, and fully informed about everything that has to do with senior living communities. Or at least to know how to find answers for questions asked. The food serving team who is most often in contact with residents fulfills that challenge when they are fully trained with people skills.
Communication abilities are key factors in making new residents feel the comfort of home. Chit-chat conversation is a skill to practice until it easily becomes second nature. Continued education and practice of smarter ways of working empower employees to make judgment decisions on the spot when necessary. Kind Dining♥ conveys the importance of your food servers’ relationships to your residents and how their dining experience affects the quality of life of your residents. Learning new ways to perform meal service can teach you a smarter way to work. Practicing, especially by checking your own appearance to make certain that nothing is remiss i.e. your hair and uniform are neat and clean and your attitude is cheerful. Know the menu at hand and be ready to inform your residents of any changes or updated news that may affect them. Also, master the value of detailed checklists.
Kind Dining♥ training modules were created for the benefit of online instruction and designed to appeal to all staff members. Our coaching series was designed to help you build a winning dining service operation that will place your community in a position that places you at the top of any list.
B♥ Kind Tip: Your food service team is the face of the entire organization.
A friend recently told me about a note she received from a friend who had just moved into an assisted living community several states away from where they lived. Their friendship covered many years. It held the following message.
“My move into the assisted living community went smoothly. My son will tend to the selling of the house and my daughter is now close by. She will come to visit most days, at least until she is certain that I’ve adapted. So, I’m letting y’all know my new snail mail address.
Everything here seems very nice, the staff is friendly, and (this one is really important) the food is delicious, plentiful, and served by friendly, caring servers. I haven’t met any other residents yet, but I’m giving myself a week to get my business of moving completed. Then, I imagine, I will meet some folks when I start participating in the activities. There are many activities offered. The very first day I did attend an interesting talk by an author about his book. I enjoyed it very much.
I will be missing y’all, so please stay in touch!”
It isn’t only people associated with the industry of senior community living that recognize the importance of your food servers. We, who are involved with training employees, pay close attention to those who are part of serving meals. We know they are the company’s best asset! We know how important they are to the residents of the community! So important that a new resident will immediately reassure her friends back home, that she is, indeed, being well cared for in her new home! Most important to her? The food is delicious, plentiful, and the servers are friendly!
Kind Dining♥ training sessions are rooted in teaching service standards for senior living communities at all levels of care. It is a proven turnkey curriculum for communities that realize resident-centered/directed care is a priority that benefits the company. Kind Dining♥ coaching is designed uniquely for staff who, directly or indirectly, serves meals. The interactive eLearning format of learning inspires your teams to weave hospitality with healthcare, converse with residents, and care about those they serve and work beside. Education and practice empower employees and instill the desire to continually improve their serving and communication skills. Kind Dining♥ curriculum was created to aid companies who don’t have time or resources to form their own training series.
B♥ Kind Tip: Remember, improvement is an ongoing process.