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 to your eyes where everyone can see it while hearing it in your voice? Do you use a lively step into the room so they know you are truly as happy to see them as they are seeing you? It’s vital that you mean it when you say you are happy to be bringing their meal. Your voice reveals how you feel even more than the words you use. Guaranteed you will feel better using a chipper tone of voice while you are extending a happy word to the resident. It’s human nature.

Using an upbeat attitude is a choice, one that can be learned through practice even if you have heavy problems waiting for you elsewhere. It’s a way of tucking your own woes into a little pocket that you can bring out later when you need it. They don’t have to be foremost in your mind when you are serving meals. You will find facing your own problems easier by starting with the confidence you carried throughout your workday. Kind Dining® training teaches how to make choices, how practicing hospitality lightens your own load. You will be improving the quality of the meals you serve without changing a single thing on your resident’s tray. 

Basic training of your food serving staff is an investment that remains with practice until it becomes part of your food server’s natural attitude. This improvement in your food serving staff will make a significant difference to your residents.  Making and keeping residents happy in these trying times is a gift you can easily give them. Provide your residents with nutritional, tempting dishes, eye-appealing to whet the appetite, and top it off with pleasant, effervescent food servers whose presence will be remembered after they have moved on to serve the next resident. Your food server can make their day!

Our B♥ Kind® Tip: Non-verbal communication is indispensable to great service.

About Cindy Heilman

Cindy is the founder and owner of Kind Dining®, which she began in 2006. She’s traveled across the country and Canada working with and training senior living communities that want to create an exceptional dining experience for their residents and staff. In addition, she certifies select professionals in her Kind Dining® philosophy and provides tools, now in an eLearning format, that make learning stick and help people put insights into action. As a result of her work, clients often share their staff has a new sense of purpose, get along better and keep their focus and energy on what matters most. In fact, she wrote a book, Hospitality for Boomers on how to attract residents and keep good team members. In her free time, she enjoys walking Oregon trails and cheering on her favorite soccer teams, the Portland Thorns and Timbers.

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