While at NIC this fall in Washington, DC, I spent a few minutes chatting with Chris Belford about his transition from the operating side of senior living to the equity side.
By Steve Moran
While at NIC this fall in Washington, DC, I spent a few minutes chatting with Chris Belford about his transition from the operating side of senior living to the equity side. I was particularly interested in what that transition taught him.
Chis has been in the industry for 26 years. He started with a small regional company in the Seattle area. He spend 15 years at Emeritus and served as a Divisional President at Brookdale for 18 months after the merger. Today he is with American Healthcare Investors.
As an operator he was mildly suspicious or leery about what the equity providers were asking for, feeling like they were just being difficult and that the requirements were stupid.
The biggest realization was that equity providers are simply wanting to make sure they are working with good operators.
The equity providers have a very simple goal and that is to make sure the operators survive and thrive.
What equity providers are looking for includes an organization that focused on serving residents; that has enough infrastructure to support their operations; they want an organization that provides good care.
At American Healthcare Investors, they particularly like strong regional players.
How to Be a Better Operator
I asked Chris to reflect on how . . . from an equity providers standpoint . . . operators can do a better job. Here are his thoughts:
The single most important relationship that exists in any senior community is the relationship between the caregiver and the resident. Because of this, every community should be focused on enhancing that relationship in as many ways as they can.
The C-Suite folks need to spend some serious time in their communities, watching how work is done, and getting to know residents and staff. They need to gain an understanding of the challenges the local communities face.
You can watch the entire interview here: