We have a bunch of brilliant, caring, creative people in this industry. We need to put our heads together to figure out the solution to this problem!

By Jacquelyn Kung & Steve Moran

Ask your children and grandchildren where they would like to work and they might say Google, Disney, or Accenture.

Hardly ever does a senior living or care company come up. And shockingly, we struggle with employee hiring, retaining, and development. In fact, I’d venture to guess that our struggle for talent is tightly related.

We are an industry desperate for talent. Let’s do something about it!

A Simple Idea

So here’s a simple idea — let’s make our industry known as a great place to work.

Starting from big to small, this is what we would need to do:

  1. Get national attention for our various organizations as great places to work

  1. Work on making changes to our culture, down to an individual supervisor level, to improve even more and see the results with real data tied to key performance metrics

  1. Compete and win against the Google’s and Disney’s of the world as great employers

Stop Focusing on the Problems

Sure, we have all the issues that we’ve all opined about: low wages, difficult to manage staff, different types of workers — some of whom have very physically demanding work. But guess what, so do many other companies that have gotten national recognition. Think of the wages and work at places such as Wegman’s Grocers, The Cheesecake Factory, Hilton, Delta Airlines, just to name a few.

There is a small group of us trying to push us up this uphill battle. Please leave your thoughts on what else we can do as individual organizations and as an industry in this war for talent.

We Are the Solution

A few months ago, I (Steve) was invited to be part of a roundtable where we were going to talk about big issues in senior living. It was an intriguing and exciting opportunity. It started out amazingly good, fun and positive, but by the time the 4 hours was over, I could hardly wait to escape.   

We spent almost the whole time talking about the problems, which means it was just a huge high-level bitch session. I came away without a single idea for making senior living a better place to live or work.  

We actually have a bunch of brilliant, caring, creative people in this industry. We need to put our heads together to figure it out. As Jacquelyn says in the first part of this article . . . we can figure it out.