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Community Life - June 28, 2021

Connections With Staff Improve Lifestyle for Older Adults

The number of Americans aged 65 and older is expected to more than double over the next 40 years, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The number of older adults ages 85 and older, the group that most often needs help with basic personal care, is set to quadruple between 2000 and 2040. Independent living and assisted living communities will be called upon more than ever to provide seniors with choices so they can maintain their independence as well as their dignity as they grow older. Building staff connections at these communities is crucial for older adults.

The focus at communities such as Villagio of is to create a low-maintenance lifestyle with activities built around personal histories and interests. Independent living and assisted living offers a fulfilling lifestyle for residents, ensuring that each day provides opportunities for them to thrive and create meaningful connections with others.

The connections we encourage our residents to make include both residents and staff. The presence of experienced, caring staff at assisted living communities is essential to the health and wellbeing of residents. We recognize the importance of incorporating staff and resident relationships into our cultures. In our experience, the best employees have both strong clinical skills as well as “people” skills, which they bring to the organization.

The Importance of Meaningful Connections

Long-term care residences are increasingly looking for employees who want meaningful jobs and who are passionate about building and maintaining relationships with residents. What this means is paying attention to what motivates the employee from the inside.

Many healthcare and senior living career employees have a story about why they have chosen their career path. Some were moved by the older adults in their lives, which inspired them to do some kind of work that enables them to relate to seniors. Others hope to change society’s views about aging.

Once these employees are hired, it’s essential that the community foster an environment that values and supports resident-employee relationships.

We welcome you to get to know some of our team members before you come in and meet them in person. Many have been here for 10 years and longer, building connections with residents. Kammi Henry, director of financial services and with us for eight years, says, “I cherish the relationships I have made with my residents, and at times, I don’t even consider this a job. This may be cliché, but we really are one big extended family at Bradford Village.”

Sherita Crawford, ACMA at Villagio of Bradford Village, has been with the community for a decade. Sherita’s favorite part about working here is the residents, and she has stayed for so long because the company aligns with her values and her principles as a caregiver.

Some of our team members share personal connections with our residents from before they started working here. Caitlin Cairns, director of sales and marketing, credits her friend’s grandmother Ruth—a resident at Villagio of Bradford Village—for the reason she started working in senior living in the first place.

Other Ways We Cultivate a Relationship-Focused Team

The warm, welcoming culture at Villagio is largely a credit to the loyalty and longevity of our employees. This consistency is why we are able to provide better quality care and more personalized services provided by people the residents have come to know and trust.

Here’s what we consider when seeking the right kind of employee for our team:

  • Our hiring process evaluates not only clinical experience but the personalities and soft skills of our candidates. We are not just looking for a specific degree or body of experience, but we dig deeper to find out what kind of passion and motivation people have. Our team views their work as more than just a job—and those are the kind of people we want as part of our staff.
  • Our management team inspires our employees. Inspiration moves people to act out of a feeling of love, enabling them to become part of something bigger than themselves. It means truly making a difference in others’ lives.
  • Our culture is conducive to resident-centered care as well as the power of relationships. We encourage our team to interact personally with our residents—getting to them, talking about common interests, and otherwise making them feel like they are truly part of a community.

If you are seeking an active retirement community for yourself or an older loved one, we invite you to come and see our independent living and assisted living community for yourself. Contact the experienced, friendly team at Villagio of Bradford Village today and schedule a visit. We can’t wait to meet you!

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