Everyone has a story. Ending an old year and beginning a new one brings out the stories that residents find satisfying to tell. The savvy food server gives the best gift and builds a good relationship when he/she listens intently to what the resident wants to share. Listening is a skill that can be learned and practiced. It not only gives great satisfaction to an older person but adds to the list of food-serving skills. It strengthens the bond created between the resident and the server. It increases the value of the employee and creates a sense of belonging and a feeling of accomplishment. Listening is the highest form of hospitality. Hospitality holds hands with healthcare which helps elders through their life experiences. Sharing stories comforts the teller and the one receiving them by listening. The skill can be added to daily habits with little effort.
One of many things a food server learns by listening is that all older adults in their Senior Living Community are not the same. To lump them all together because they share a certain age bracket would be a major error. An obvious result of that difference is their exposure to various ethnic and cultural foods in their dining experiences. The world has grown smaller and has introduced new food preparations and recipes to everyone interested. Opting for the time of day when a person prefers to dine is varied. Some prefer early supper, and others prefer late evening dining. Today’s well-rounded community offers to accommodate everyone in the community.
The answer to all residents choosing as individuals is to operate the dining room similarly to a restaurant. That is the way chefs face the challenges of culinary services. Experienced chefs incorporate the assorted tastes of people in the community. They execute the daily mealtimes, including special event meals and holiday buffets. Residents’ families are invited to share the meals Mom or Dad enjoys each day.
Kind Dining® training series has long recognized and taught the importance of listening, building friendships, treating residents as individuals with dignity, respect, and kindness, and seeing the difference in one from the other to all employees. Everyone on the entire food serving team, including the preparers in the kitchen and each one who comes from other departments to serve food or beverage, benefits from our Kind Dining® curriculum training series. Hospitality and healthcare work together as the food-serving team does. Kind Dining encourages any company that wants to thrive and evolve, to invest in its employees by continuing education and creating a community of belonging to retain valued employees.
Be ♥ Kind Tip: Does your food serving team know older adults are not the same?