What are you communicating without realizing it?

Looking at it from a resident’s point of view, after their own grooming, followed by waiting for hours for their next meal, what do they see when you enter their room? Can they rely on an enthusiastic “Hello, Mr./Mrs. …, How are you doing today?”  Can they see a smile behind the mask being worn? The smile that moves up … Continue reading

 Is it time for change and celebrations?

It’s important to continue having celebrations in this time of extreme caution and stress. Have you ever been in a restaurant when the table or two over from you received a cake lit with candles and the wait staff singing Happy Birthday? Didn’t it make you and the other diners around smile, maybe applaud or even join in the song? … Continue reading

Can robots replace your food serving team?

Already many stories have come out of our physical distancing for more than a month now. One I heard recently concerned a woman’s husband who was ill but not with the symptoms of the novel coronavirus. The husband didn’t have a cough at all, or fever, muscle pain, chills, loss of taste or smell, or any shortness of breath. He … Continue reading

Is your food serving team interacting with your residents?

Serving food has always been so much more than bringing food to the table. Every person who loves being in the kitchen or has restaurant life in their blood system knows that “Bad service can ruin a good meal yet good service can save a bad one.” Even your finest chefs will tell you that. When it comes to senior … Continue reading

The #3 Truth That You Cannot Ignore

Truth # 3 The Gap Between Expectation and Service. What makes my husband and I drive 1½ hours to dine at a particular restaurant when there are six good dining establishments within a mile of our home? Answer: the owners and staff will welcome us with sincere delight. Their service and food will be everything we anticipate. This created ambiance … Continue reading

The #2 Truth That You Cannot Ignore!

Truth #2 Mealtimes are the Core of Your Community. Mealtimes are so much more than nourishing the body of each resident. It’s a time to form new, or replenish, the friendships they’ve made in the community and their acquaintance with your servers. Socializing is an important part of their well-being. This takes place at the table. Your residents spend 60% … Continue reading

6 Truths You Cannot Ignore!

Truth # 1 is a trumpet announcing that your dining room is the best marketing tool you have! It’s the authentic showcase to the public, the foundation of social life in your community. It’s where your residents will break bread with their family and friends during visits. When they don’t have visitors, mealtimes are when they connect with the other … Continue reading

Engage and Prosper: Build the Culture and They Will Come

In my experience working with senior housing providers, I have seen what happens when employees find meaning in their work. I recall a teenage kitchen worker in our Kind Dining class, who shared he was just looking for work and happened to get a job in this community. His focus was all about the money.  However, after working there for … Continue reading

How I Found a Sense of Purpose and the Birth of Kind Dining

Thirty years ago when I entered a career in healthcare food service, I, like everyone else had to start at the “bottom.” At times, I felt the sting of being treated as if food service were on the lowest rung of the organizational chart. It felt awkward at first, like I was just there to clock in and clock out … Continue reading

Caregiving Staff Caught In The Middle? How to overcome, “I don’t want to be a waitress” attitude in your dining rooms

Just like in an orchestra, where musician’s practice from individual sheet music to deliver a unified audience pleasing performance, in a successful dining room, every staff member needs to perform their individual part to please diners. In your community, do you have some employees who aren’t willing to lend a helping hand? It seems like a standard issue in every … Continue reading