Let Seniors Out of the Box!

Let Seniors Out of the Box!


A recent article in Senior Housing News shows how one community takes on the challenge of seniors and technology.  This community looked outside its own walls to form a partnership that brought great value to the community’s program offerings but more importantly, value to their residents.

Don’t Limit Seniors

Senior man staring into cardboard box

So many times we make assumptions which limit both us (as individuals and companies) as well as those we make those assumptions about.  We make assumptions based on our own opinions as well as past knowledge.  We must not only keep an open mind but embrace that times and people change and evolve.  In our minds, we might limit seniors’ interest and ability when it comes to technology.  We think it will be too difficult, we think they are not interested and even THEY may have these same thoughts.


Technology is Increasingly User Friendly

Do your residents shy away from technology? Some may not be interested because they think it is too complicated or difficult even if they wanted to learn.  Equipment is becoming increasingly user friendly and apps make that equipment even easier…well, sometimes.  With so many options, it is not hard to find systems even the most timid can learn and use.

Reducing Isolation

We often criticize technology for isolating our younger generations by limiting their interaction to technological means vs. human interaction.  While that is most definitely a valid argument, some populations are isolated due to circumstances such as residents in senior housing with family in distant locations.  Technology can open doors to communication and interaction.  Emails, video-chatting, Facebook, and other applications can give those residents access to family and friends they may not have right now.  If these residents have family far away, what a gift to be able to see them and be able to stay up to date via video and pictures.

Comfort Zones

While technology may be out of the comfort zone of both the senior student to learn it and the staff who is designated to teach it, rewards can be significant. Don’t hesitate to look outside your community for help with instituting such programs. As this article illustrates, finding partners outside your community can benefit your community as well as your residents.  It does not have to be a partner as large as Google, local businesses and organization offer a wealth of knowledge and resources.

It is a common adage that life happens outside our comfort zone and our senior residents are no different.  When we are pushed to learn and grow, we find confidence, opportunities and great satisfaction in overcoming perceived obstacles.  Find ways to help develop this confidence and satisfaction in your residents.  Give your residents challenges every now and then.  Lifetime learning is exactly what is says, a lifetime of learning no matter your age.  We should adopt this concept not only for ourselves but for our residents as well.

An important reminder for us and them; we are never too old to learn something new.

Webinar Recap:  Back To Basics in Professional Selling

Webinar Recap: Back To Basics in Professional Selling


sellilng senior living, Back to basics, senior living consulting, senior living consultant, Moore Diversified Services

Senior Living expert Roy Barker, Director of Special Projects at Moore Diversified Services, recently shared in a webinar what he has learned in his years of experience in the Senior Living industry about Professional Selling and how important it is to go “Back to the Basics.”  Barker specifically used his mystery shopping experiences to highlight some of the main mistakes Senior Living sales staffs are still making, mostly without even realizing it.  If Senior Living sales staffs take Roy’s advice and implement his suggestions, it could have a big impact on the bottom line.

If you missed the webinar, you can view it in its entirety by clicking on the video below at the end of this article.  You can also view past webinars on the Moore Diversified Services Senior Living YouTube channel. This article gives a brief recap of some of the main points of the most recent webinar.  Roy broke up the Sales Process into three stages:  the Beginning, the Middle, and the End.  But first, Roy talks about a Shift in Focus needed in Senior Living sales.

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10 Must-Dos for Community Call Takers

10 Must-Dos for Community Call Takers


CallCenter[1]Over the last few years, the Senior Living space has done an outstanding job attracting top educated talent to the industry. We have become very good at developing and working with complex models and plans in all aspects of the business. But, along the way, some of the very important little things have fallen through the cracks. These little details are specific to sales and marketing and are essential components and relating to prospects and closing a sale.

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What is Your Digital Media Strategy for 2015?


digital media strategy, senior housing consulting, senior housing consultant, Moore Diversified Services Are you about to move right past this post because you don’t believe you need one? THINK AGAIN!

Digital Media is now an integral part of any comprehensive marketing strategy/plan. While some products and services may use digital media more than others, every business needs to utilize digital media in some form to build and enhance client and customer relationships.

Product Marketing vs. Relationship Marketing

There was a time when you strictly marketed your product or service to your target audience. While that is still a part of an effective marketing plan, relationship marketing is extremely effective in our industry. As a provider in the senior living and housing industry you actually have two target audiences. The first target audience is the senior themselves. The second is the family members of the senior who may be the primary decision maker or at minimum highly influential in the decision making process. You must be building relationships with current and potential customers as well as their family members.

In the case of a senior living and housing community, if an individual is not a resident or has a family member as a resident, you still want to be the first community they think of if the need arises or if someone asks for a recommendation. This means getting your community name out there and engaging with the public, resident or not. This process does not have to be complicated. Start with a simple plan and build from there.


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Wishing You and Your Family a Safe and Happy Holiday Season!


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Happy Holidays From The Staff of MDS

We at MDS would like to take this opportunity to wish all of you dedicated to the service and care of the many residents aging successfully in communities around the world a Safe and Happy Holidays!

We especially thank those that will tend to residents on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day; there is no day off in an industry such as ours.  To many of these residents, you are their family and you will make their holidays bright!

Thank you for your commitment to the betterment of the Senior Living and Senior Housing Industry.



Can your office survive without you? If it can’t you are doing it all wrong!


Empower Definition Magnifier Showing Authority Or Power Given To Do SomethingThe sign of a true leader is one who is constantly creating new leaders.  These type of leaders inspire, motivate, educate, support and mentor others into positions of leadership.  They cultivate the skills of others and strengthen their weaknesses.

In Boy Scouts, one of the main premises of the Eagle Scout project, and something you will be grilled on in you Eagle Board of Review, is the question: could your project have happened without you? In order to have a truly successful project, it must be so well planned out AND you must have designated, informed, trained other participants that a) you as the project leader do not actually work on project day and b) if you cannot show up for any reason, the project proceeds as planned.

This so goes against our nature of needing to be needed.  We tend to feel if our business or department can survive without us, we have no value.  We MUST adjust this way of thinking! If business as usual can proceed without you, then to your credit you have hired some very capable employees and you have trained them so well they know how to do their job. This then frees you up to focus on the big picture, more time for strategic planning and business growth.

Do you think you must be involved in every little aspect of your department? Do you require frequent updates and details on every project? Now we get into micromanaging, stay tuned…


Kim Jimenez has been a regular contributor to the MDS website and MDS blog for the past 15 years.  Kim holds a supervisory position in a Fortune 100 company and has extensive experience with a multitude of employee, training and leadership issues.  She is currently obtaining her degree in Human Resource Management at Southern New Hampshire University.


Gold Is So Yesterday … Go Platinum!


A guest on an NPR show I was listening to the other day mentioned the “Platinum Rule” in the context of how we treat others. I had no idea what they were talking about. Now, after a little research, I can see that I’m very late to the party. This is a concept that has been around for some time. For those of you who may be living under a rock, like myself, the Platinum Rule now trumps the Golden Rule.      platinum-rule1

The Golden Rule is, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” The Platinum Rule, however, is, “Do unto others as they would like done unto them!” What a novel concept. While the Golden Rule sounds good on the surface, it is really kind of self-centered. This would mean that we think we know what is best for everyone else because that’s what we like or we want. While this could be very true, it could also be the furthest thing from the truth.

With people we have just met or known for a short time, we may not know exactly what they want. This is the beauty of the Platinum Rule. It causes us to shift focus from us to them. It forces us to try and determine what the other person really want or likes. It forces us to be an active listener and maybe even ask some questions. This also meshes well with one of my favorite Covey teachings, “We must first seek to understand.”

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What Else is Aging at Your Community?


groovnickThis is a continuation of the top priorities for success in 2015 and beyond. Previously, we talked about increasing resident age and acuity levels. In this edition, we will explore the impact of age on the physical plant. Because there were a lot of communities built in the 1980s and 1990s this has led to quite a bit of older inventory still in use today. Some owners have done a great job keeping up and some … not so much.

The old saying is true. You never get a second chance to make a first impression. Curb appeal can be inviting or may discourage prospects from stopping. The first step the prospect and their families take into your community will be the lasting image in their minds.

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Be an Appreciative Rock Star!


I love music. I can’t sing or play an instrument, but I do love music and music trivia. Recently I had the good fortune to see a great band, one that has been around for many years, at one of my most favorite venues in the entire world, the Casino Ballroom in Hampton rock_star_logo2Beach, NH. It was a terrific show and fun was had by all, (including the guy sleeping in our car when we came out! For those who follow me on Facebook, you understand, and for those who don’t, that is an entirely different story.)

But, as we were leaving the concert we walked by the band’s bus. I was very surprised and saddened to see what happened next. Although there were only about ten fans around, two of the band members ducked their heads down attempting to hide from us. The sad thing was that, although most of us were old enough that we were past the “star-struck” stage and autographs don’t mean that much to us, there was a young man there who had been waiting patiently to meet the band and possibly get an autograph. It was troubling that they couldn’t have taken 10 minutes to sign a few autographs and mingle with their fans. It would have done wonders for their image. They seem to have forgotten how and why they had become so successful … fans liking them and their music.

With a Little Help From My Friends

It made me think of the senior living industry and other businesses I patronize. People like to be known and recognized. I go to a couple little local restaurants and diners where I know the owners. They never fail to stop by and say “hey” and make you feel welcome and appreciated for your patronage. I have befriended a manager at a national chain and he never fails to stop by my table and talk for a few minutes and even comps my meals most of the time. If I see these people on the street, in a different environment, they still speak and we treat each other as friends.

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What Does Your Customer Service Say about Your Community’s Culture?


Does your senior living community, including your staff, express a can-do spirit? Do they have a mindset that is resident focused? Are they able to see the positive and not growl about everything? Do they work on fixing what’s wrong instead of griping about it? How much thought do you really put into personnel placement and training? These are a few questions to examine with regards to how you express your company’s culture to your residents, those who work within your company, and those outside of your walls.  Value concept

I recently read a blog on LinkedIn  which garnered a lot of attention for all the wrong reasons, but it had a good message. The blog described the advice a venture capitalist had for the young twenty something in whose startup he was investing $150 million. To paraphrase the conversation, the venture capitalist advised, “Don’t mess up the company culture, that’s what I’m investing in.”

Unintended Culture Shift

Unfortunately, it tends to happen in most industries. As companies grow and hire more and more people, they tend to drift away from the core values and culture that made them a success. It takes a lot of effort to stay the course to retain your company culture. You have to hire the right people, develop a successful orientation process as well as an ongoing training program, monitor your employees’ actions and outcomes, and adjust as the need arises.

And as the old saying goes, the commitment to a positive company culture starts at the very top. I don’t mean just knowing about it, reading about it, preaching about it, I mean really LIVING IT 31! (For those of you out of the loop on the newest lingo, 31 is the old 24/7, just 24+7. And if you’re wondering, no I‘m not that cool, I was recently schooled by my younger, hipper nephews).

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