By Steve Moran

The only thing that should matter is the customer experience. This is true for vendor companies, and this is true for senior living.  

I have frequently talked to founders of technology companies that too often have come up with a great idea to solve some senior living problem (as they perceive it) and gone out and spent a bunch of money to build a technology solution, only to discover that no one — or more often hardly anyone — will buy it.   

They were so convinced their technology was amazing that they never bothered to think about what it would actually be like using the technology. 

Senior Living Communities

I am not sure we are much better when it comes to senior living. Someone way back when built an old folks home. Someone else saw that old folks home and thought, “This is a great idea, but I can do it better,” and built another one that likely was better than the first one.

I suspect that today our senior living communities and designs are still to a tiny tiny degree being built the way they are built because someone way back when built that first community. Sure, there has been research, and there is no doubt that even the very worst senior living community being built today is way better than those first models.  

Start With the Customer Experience

Are apartment designs really built to give customers a good experience? In some ways yes — colors, safety features — but in other ways not so much. For instance, rarely do apartments have as much storage as residents would like. 

What about that front entrance? Is it really designed to give the customer a great experience? The dining room, the multipurpose areas ….

That is only architecture. How about programming? We still mostly do the same things we have been doing because we have always been doing those things, because they are the things that are expected.  But what if all that is not what people wanted?

Steve Jobs

This entire article was inspired by a decades old video of Steve Jobs talking about how Apple was slavishly devoted to creating technology that gave customers great experiences. 

Perhaps success in senior living is that simple.