Does Your Team Look Forward to Work?

Are your employees satisfied, fulfilled, and eager to come to work? During this difficult time in our nation, we are thanking and supporting frontline workers, and rightly so, but what about our unsung caregivers? Are we supporting them and giving them the tools to be fulfilled?

Recently, the Residential Assisted Living Academy hosted an annual year-end meeting where employees expressed their eagerness to engage in the work environment.

Does your business foster a culture where people are praised for the work that they do, or do your employees feel like the enemy in the workplace?

When owners and operators of assisted living homes implement the right strategies, staff will be passionate, excited and happy about coming to work.

This is important to the success of your business because happy employees provide quality care.

Despite all the opposing research about employee satisfaction, there’s only one thing that counts in the end.

“People will forget what you said, they will forget what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel,” – author unknown. One thing that really counts is how your employees feel about coming to work each day in your assisted living home.


  1. Employees Are the Enemy
    Work environments that treat employees like enemies are considered the industry bottom feeders. They don’t read blogs and resources to help educate, support and inform staff of best practices. They treat caregivers like warehouse workers on assembly lines.
  2. Employees Are Part of a Complex Machine
    Some assisted living homeowners confuse the idea of treating people like precious treasure vs. operators of a complex machine. They think these roles are equally important, which they are, but people value the idea of being treated like precious treasure more than anything.
  3. Employees Are A Precious Treasure
    When staff is treated like precious treasure, assisted living businesses experience positive and productive staff, happy residents and families, a solid reputation and employee retention. This translates to higher occupancy rates, job interest that makes hiring easier, and better financial gains.

Quality assisted living homes are always looking for unique ways to further improve the work environment for team members.


    Develop hiring practices amongst individuals who are aligned with the core values of your assisted living home. Core values are more complex than a skillset and availability. Identifying candidates with the right values takes time, but it eliminates regret.
    Invest in your team. Strengths-based coaching empowers employees, builds enthusiasm and strengthens confidence. These are the ingredients to creating a happy workplace. Always be prepared to maximize the growth potential of your staff – owners that invest in professional development ultimately strengthen their own brand.
    Take a thorough monthly evaluation of employee achievement and satisfaction. Be deliberate about publicly celebrating employee achievements in a way that the entire team notices, to include residents and family members. Everybody needs public praise – celebrate success.
    Develop a well-connected culture of passionate people, from caregivers, management, operators and owners. This culture will overflow into the assisted living home amongst the residents and their family. This type of culture assures people that they are making a significant and positive difference in the work they accomplish each day.


When people effectively work as a consistently high-performing team, it is easy to forget to see staffers as individuals.

There are many ways to ensure that you show team members that you see, recognize and value their individuality:

  • When assigning schedules, be sure to fill slots based on individual needs.
  • Use small nods to acknowledge individuality – self-identity goes a long way.

Acknowledging individuality allows experienced caregivers to support new employees with difficult aspects of the job.

Caregiving in assisted living homes can be stressful and taxing, individuals support one another on the team.


Compliments add value, appreciation makes you feel better, and gratitude makes you want to be around people.

Use the following 10 strategies to create culture, celebrate success and show appreciation to your employees. It will excite employees about engaging in the work environment daily.

  1. Give Unexpected Gifts
  2. Write Thank You Notes
  3. Create Company Merchandise for Employees
  4. Take time for Training and professional Development
  5. Provide Education Reimbursements Programs
  6. Host Company Picnics
  7. Surprise Employees with Sweets & Treats
  8. Spoil Them with Scrubs.
  9. Start an Awards Recognition Program
  10. Share Praise from Clients.


Either you will create a culture of celebration and appreciation or suspicion. A successful culture in the assisted living industry must be created intentionally.

  • Find things to compliment
  • Be free with compliments
  • Make someone feel better everyday
  • Brag on others daily

Visit RALNA to learn more about owning and operating a successful assisted living home. Membership with the Residential Assisted Living National Association will empower your business with the support needed from blogs, legal support, group-based discounts and so much more.

Are your employees satisfied, fulfilled, eager to come to work?

RALNA will provide you with the support you need to give them all the tools needed to thrive in a competitive industry.

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