Do Your Food Servers Know the Hospitality Skills to Help Personalize the Dining Hour?

Teenagers looking for jobs during the summer and school vacation times often apply at retirement communities. One in particular was a boy working in the kitchen. When he started, he had no other thoughts than earning money toward future education.  His entire attitude changed when residents became interested in him. They took the time to ask his opinions about events.  … Continue reading

Do you have days when nothing goes right?

There are days when any commercial kitchen can run into problems. Electrical systems shut down for some unknown reason, the fresh vegetable supply didn’t come in, the chef took ill, the sous chef has poison ivy, and so on. Can those problems be fixed?  A back-up system works, the day’s menu is adjusted, the second or third in command steps … Continue reading

Welcome New Residents with Caring and Consideration

I often write about welcoming new residents that have chosen your community for the next chapter of their lives, which may be a fresh beginning for them. Your dining room is an important place for them to meet friends by sharing a meal and listening to their stories. Another way to look at them is that they have chosen your … Continue reading

Food Serving Experience

Ambiance in the dining room is vital to success in the community. That means a food serving staff working together, cheerfully, enjoying the work they do. Dining seniors will respond in kind to that attitude if they see it every mealtime. Forward-thinking providers and administrators see the wisdom and value of arming their food serving staff with skills that improve … Continue reading

Kind Dining

Does a bully ruin your community dining room?

A friend told me about her friend Anne starting a new job as a food server in a senior living community. She ran smack into a bully that pulled gloom down over everyone in the dining room. It was a sad place to be. She boldly criticized every other food server trying to get the residents to laugh at them. … Continue reading

Kind Dining in Assisted Living Pays

Leading the Troops

Seniors telling their stories is an important part of who they are as they evolve into their elder years. I heard a WWII veteran tell his story on NPR’s StoryCorp. He was part of a platoon who had to come up with ideas on deception; how to fool the enemy into believing misinformation. One of the tools they used was … Continue reading

Do your residents ask for fresh fruits and vegetables?

This time of year when seeds are planted in freshly tilled soil excitement blossoms in the air. The promise of fresh vegetables growing and ready to harvest before we know it is an exciting part of satisfying residents in your community. This brings me to think of the Farm-to-Table programs I’ve seen in senior living communities. The concept has grown … Continue reading

Remember the newly hired person who didn’t really fit?

If you think that the next employee you hire will bring a fresh new outlook to your present group of food servers, take a deep breath and rethink that thought. Remember the last time you hired a person you thought was perfect for the job only to find that one little item slipped through the evaluation and analysis. It’s the … Continue reading

Does your food serving staff know your diners?

Do you remember Deborah Kerr singing Getting to Know You in the film The King & I with Yul Brynner? It’s a lovely, happy scene where she meets the King’s children, all of them. As the new teacher, she is in the same situation as the food servers in your community dining room. She sings “Getting to know you, Getting … Continue reading

Do Your Food Servers Use Communication and Teamwork to Their Benefit?

We all know that the dining room in the community is not the same as a restaurant vying for its place in popularity with the public. But we also know that a community dining room run like that popular restaurant is a place we are aiming for. To satisfy our residents, their guests and our food servers is a good … Continue reading