Senior Living Communities are magical places. The truly great ones create harmonious environments where people of different generations and backgrounds interact and enjoy life together. Often, the staff is just as much a part of the community as the residents themselves.
With that said, all families—large or small—face internal challenges. These four tips can help your staff and residents build stronger relationships:
Communicate Between Your Senior Living Staff and Residents
The most basic building block of any relationship is communication. Whether husband and wife or resident and staff member, it is absolutely critical people who spend so much time together communicate regularly. Not only should the dialogue be frequent, but it should also be honest.
Traditional methods of communication in a senior living facility include suggestion boxes, periodic surveys, and daily face-to-face interactions. These are great techniques, but technology is creating tools to further assist. Many communities have implemented software that pushes out electronic messages and encourages regular resident feedback.
It’s important for senior living community staff to never forget their customers include both residents and relatives. You cannot properly attend to the senior’s needs without addressing those of the relatives. Communities that work hard to form strong bonds with family members will find their relationships with the residents improve, also.
Once again, technology is aiding in this effort. So-called “family engagement portals” encourage communication between staff and family members. Notes can be shared both ways, and staff can even upload photos of the residents in real time. Moreover, an interactive calendar can keep the family current on resident activities.
There are many ways senior living communities can encourage engagement between residents and staff. Some efforts require more planning and investment, such as floor plans that include communal spaces throughout the home. Other techniques are simpler and can be implemented quite easily.
Daily and weekly activities are a good way to engage residents and staff. Some communities have weekly dances, bingo, and card games. Other ideas include occasional fine dining events and hairdressing for the ladies. Whatever the catalyst, the important thing is that residents and staff interact on a fun level outside of the daily norm.
These events differ from the previously referenced ideas, as they also include family and the outside community. Some senior living communities have enjoyed phenomenal success in hosting elegant garden parties with invites sent to prominent members of the city. The relaxed atmosphere often facilitates dialogue between staff, residents, and families.
Running a successful senior living community is a complex endeavor. People of all ages and backgrounds have unique personalities with different preferences and expectations. With that said, it’s important that staff members and residents build strong relationships. Anything that encourages positive interaction and communication will help to achieve this goal!
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