Rowntree Gardens in Stanton, California, did this completely crazy thing that you might want to copy.

By Steve Moran

I have written frequently about the year-long Culture 2100 initiative on Human Capital where C-Suite leaders from 10 prominent senior living organizations met 4 times over the course of a year to talk about how they can and are creating cultures where team members love coming to work each day.

In April, I interviewed Randy Brown, the CEO of Rowntree Gardens, a single site CCRC in Stanton California, (Orange County). They did this completely crazy thing that you might want to copy.

Cracking the Millennial Employment Code

They realized they were struggling to really communicate with their millennial staff, which in turn meant it was almost impossible to effectively recruit millennials. As they were struggling with this they came across a young (20-year-old) millennial who was looking for a job and asked him if was interesting in recruiting. He said yes.

Making It Work

They sat down with him and described what they were trying to accomplish. Explaining the kinds of positions they needed to fill along with the culture and core values of Rowntree Gardens. He went to work writing more millennial-friendly job descriptions and job postings. He was able to include things that touched millennial hot buttons.

Randy told me that particularly from a recruiting perspective, their website is not all that great and that this millennial recruiter is helping with the redesign.

Talking to Candidates

We originally recorded this conversation after this recruiter was on the job for just a few weeks. In a subsequent conversation with Randy, the thing he is finding most valuable is when millennial candidates show up or call about jobs he is able to communicate in a very special passionate way that attracts millennial workers.  

He is also getting out into the community, talking to schools about what it means to work in senior living and Rowntree Garden.


He has become a huge part of the onboarding process at the community. He is able to, with great passion, talk about why he loves working there, why he loves the residents and why the new employees will love working there too.  

There is much more in the video and you can watch the entire interview below:

(One note: We make reference to this being a Senior Housing Forum Podcast. That is coming; however, the format will be much different than first envisioned — therefore, we are repurposing a fair number of recordings for articles.)