When is retirement care a healthcare service, and when is it a hospitality service? There are, of course, aspects of both. Marjorie P. Lee and Episcopal Retirement Services have long pondered that question. And we keep coming back to the answer, "sometimes, and all the time."
Retirement care is sometimes healthcare. It's always hospitality. With service that’s personal.
The ERS Platinum Principal Program
Episcopal Retirement Services employees work hard to provide residents our distinct approach to hospitality at not only Marjorie P. Lee but also Deupree House, another ERS flagship community in Cincinnati, OH.
That’s why ERS employees—new hires and veterans alike—participate in our Platinum Principal customer service training classes.
The program is focused on the value, in the hospitality industry, of developing long-term relationships with customers—in our case, residents—by learning and anticipating a resident’s needs, one might render service that crosses the threshold from expected to extraordinary.
More than that, though, we seek to continually demonstrate our ability to do for our residents without being told.
That's one of the driving thoughts behind the Platinum Principal Program, devised by ERS Executive Director Emerson Stambaugh after he returned from the Ritz-Carlton "customer service boot camp."
“We want our staff to use active listening skills, so they hear with empathy what residents are trying to tell them," Stambaugh said.
“We have the luxury of getting to know people over the course of years," he continues. So, it's reasonable to assume that we can live up to our desire to ensure our residents feel like they're being cared for not by expert, caring professionals, but by people who seem like family.
“Platinum is more valuable than gold, and our residents are of utmost importance to us,” he said. “Our residents don’t live where we work. We work where they live. What an honor.”
Fulfilling Our Mission
The ERS Platinum Principal Program gets right to the heart of Marjorie P. Lee’s mission: to provide dignified, person-centered care to every resident, in every instance, regardless of circumstance.
“It goes back to relationships,” Stambaugh reasoned. When a family member looks out for another, the care is personal. It's not a service at all — it's a duty.
And we know we've met our duty to them, Stambaugh said, "when we see the smiles on residents’ faces, or when we receive a handwritten note or heartfelt words of thanks from a resident or family member.”
The Platinum Principal Program's continual training—in empathy, professional excellence, and person-centered care—helps us all to keep our skills sharp, and our ears and hearts open.
Here’s what the program looks like in action. Sean Kennedy, a staff member in our Archea Dining Room, was recently recognized by Marjorie P. Lee for his hard work and dedication to meeting the standards of quality and service that make our community stand out. During his time at MPL, Sean has received many compliments from residents for being “smooth, accurate, and sensitive to elders.” Most notably, he did a wonderful job welcoming a new resident. He explained our menu and patiently and attentively listened to the resident’s questions and stories of her family. This approach made the resident feel right at home.
Stambaugh's right: It's a wonderful responsibility and an immense honor that our elders invite us into their lives, and trust us with providing care for them. That’s why Marjorie P. Lee ensures that seniors and their caregivers know we’ll always care for them like family, no matter what.
Would you, or your elder loved one, benefit from dignified, person-centered care? Click here to schedule your tour today.