A few years ago, a ridiculous but accurate commercial made the rounds on social media. This ingenious video depicted a hurried man and woman on an escalator rushing to get to their destinations on another floor. They are chugging along when suddenly, without warning, the escalator halts to a stop about half way up.
People ask us all the time, “Do you offer customer service training?” I say, “Yes, why do you ask?”
The reality is their answer varies greatly depending on the specific pain a client is currently experiencing. In the last week I’ve had 5 separate people ask me about our “The Ultimate Customer Experience” workshop.
A Nice Problem to Have!
When a successful marketing consulting firm experienced rapid, unexpected growth, it turned to Drive to help retain an intimate, “small-organization” culture despite its new size. Sage Age Strategies is a nationally recognized, award-winning strategic marketing organization specializing in operational, marketing and growth solutions individually developed to help senior living and senior care providers thrive in their select markets.
“Sympathizing with someone? That’s the easy part. But to really know how someone else feels, you have to walk in their shoes.”
For many years as the Administrator at Aviston Countryside Manor, I struggled with how to get my team to ‘get it’. I had a ‘me’ and ‘them’ attitude and our facility, (at that time that is exactly how we functioned) was a staff and resident’s kind of place.
Just over 10 years ago I began to hear about culture change.
“In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.” – Theodore Roosevelt
Conflict avoidance can lead to a dysfunctional work environment. When you accept a behavior or incident that you know is wrong,
“I feel like a mushroom. They keep me in the dark, so I keep them in the dark.”
A key member of a leadership team muttered these powerful words when we conducted an organizational assessment for his company. This is what happens when organizations fail to create a culture that embraces open communication.
To better support team members try to lead with questions. Why? Because when you lead with questions you will:
- Increase Engagement. If you ask questions to your team members, it will build a sense of community. They will believe that their ideas are worthwhile and that you value their opinion making them an essential part of the team.
Support Their Strengths
As leaders, we spend much of our time focused on fixing others’ shortcomings: annual evaluations, coaching sessions, and disciplinary actions all focused on the negatives. Even while walking around our communities the tendency is to point out what is wrong.
The emphasis tends to be on what an individual needs to do better,
Culture fit is not the only factor to consider when hiring the right people, but it sure is important if you want to have kind, caring and engaged employees. Here are three best practices that will drive your current hiring practices forward:
Form a Hiring Committee that Includes Employees and Residents
Who better to evaluate a potential new team member than a resident,
Changing the culture in an organization takes time, dedication and commitment.
We often hear from leaders who are struggling to build positive cultures at work. Despite heroic efforts and seemingly endless attempts to turn the ship, negativity seems to persist around every corner. Team members complain about work the previous shift left behind,