By Dennis McIntee

As I have been driving around town, I have seen more and more signs for business hiring. As we have been crawling our way out of this pandemic and its economic byproducts, hiring has become an interesting process in 2021.

Hiring is one of my favorite things to talk about when it comes to building drama-free teams in senior living. When done well, it is a game-changer for creating a work culture where residents and employees thrive together.

When I am advising managers and supervisors on how to find the best caregivers and associates for their teams, the conversation of culture is inescapable. Culture is based on mindset, or all the things you cannot see when going through the interview process. We think we hire people for what they know, but what we are really hiring for is who they are.

That is where the culture interview comes in. Consider creating opportunities to see their core beliefs play out — invite them to a gathering of residents in your community and watch how they interact, or to a casual lunch with potential team members. Observe what core beliefs show up when they reveal who they are in a non-interview setting.

After all, there are four key drivers that motivate an individual’s actions:

  • People who are driven by being strict, forward, or direct
  • People who are driven by respect and recognition
  • People who are driven by the need for change and variety
  • People who are driven by a love for details and accuracy

At any given moment in time, we have each of these drivers informing our behaviors. But one usually stands out and must be regulated to ensure it doesn’t cause drama within the team. For example, being too forward or direct can feel like a command-and-demand culture instead of a create-and-collaborate environment.

Identify Your Needs

When you are hiring for an ideal culture, I recommend looking at your team today and determining which of these strengths are most evident in your existing associates. What is missing? If you know you need to hire more frontline caregivers driven by a love of details and accuracy, look for those characteristics in your interviewees.

By taking an inventory of your current team and incorporating the culture interview into your hiring process, you can make major strides toward building a strong team rooted in the desire of working together and being drama-free.

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