Customer Service in Assisted Living: Strategies for Building Successful Partnerships

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Customer Service in Assisted Living: Strategies for Building Successful Partnerships

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Customer Service in Assisted Living: Strategies for Building Successful Partnerships

Kelly Smith Papa, MSN, RN
Carol Marshall, MA

Strengthen your facility’s reputation while decreasing the likelihood of lawsuits.

If one resident has a positive and pleasant experience in your care, they’ll tell their families, and their families will tell their loved ones and friends. That’s the importance of good customer service—which we often take for granted. We say we strive for it, but how do we ensure it?

Take action and boost your facility’s reputation with Customer Service in Assisted Living: Strategies for Building Successful Partnerships, a guide to cultivate strong customer service skills in your nurses, frontline staff, and any other staff members who interact with residents and families. The book provides insight into building partnerships between residents, families, staff, and the media to manage risk and avoid litigation.

Developing an effective customer service program is the first and most essential step in protecting your organization’s reputation and showcasing what it has to offer. By providing proper family education and handling adverse events in a straightforward manner, you can reduce the likelihood of legal action being taken.

Authors Kelly Smith Papa, MSN, RN, and Carol Marshall, MA,offer a fun, innovative approach to learning with instant access to everything you need to conduct training, including customized PowerPoint presentations, in-services, and templates to meet the needs of your organization.

This resource provides downloadable in-services, including:

  • The importance of customer service
  • Dealing with upset families
  • Building relationships
  • Measuring customer service success

About the Authors:

Kelly Smith Papa, MSN, RN, is the corporate director of learning at Masonicare in Connecticut. She is responsible for developing the Masonicare University and creating a culture of continued learning. Papa’s experiences in the field of aging services include serving as a director of nursing, clinical educator, leadership coach, and dementia care consultant. For over six years, she has studied the disciplines of a learning organization and how they apply to aging services. She has researched models of application of these disciplines to create a workforce that is engaged, innovative, and more adaptable to change. Papa has presented at numerous state and national conferences on a variety of topics, including building learning organizations, creativity in staff development, person-centered care, dementia care, leading change, and leadership development. She has written books and articles on dementia care and creative staff development. In 2013, Papa served as chair of the workforce development committee for Connecticut’s task force on Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. She earned her BSN from Saint Anselm College in New Hampshire and her MSN from the University of Saint Joseph. She is a fellow of the LeadingAge Leadership Academy and received the Nightingale Award for Excellence in Nursing in 2011.

Carol Marshall, MA, is a risk management specialist based in Fort Worth, Texas. For the past 18 years, she has trained managers and staff members in long-term care facilities across the country about the benefits of exceptional customer service and risk management. Marshall has offered training programs at numerous state conferences, professional groups, and facilities.

Published: November 2016

ISBN: 978-1-68308-199-9
Page Count: 150
Dimensions: 8.5 X 11

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Why Customer Service Is the Key to Success

A Brief History of Customer Service
Why Is Customer Service Important?
How Customer Service Affects Litigation
How Consumers Measure Quality Healthcare
Three Distinctions of Quality
Reputations Are Earned

Chapter 2: How to Demonstrate Quality Customer Service

It’s All About the Relationships
Pitfalls of the Tour
The Tour
The True Picture
“What Do You Need, Hon?”
Give Customers What They Want

Chapter 3: Engaging Residents’ Families

The Impression of the Senior Services Industry
New Versus Old
Families and Community Reputations
Families Are the Frontline Customers
Interdependency: Staff Depends on the Residents and Their Families
Staff Responsibility for Reputation
Ten Strategies for Building Successful Family Partnerships
Seven Signs of Families in Conflict
Initiate Change
Don’t Take It Personally
It Is Dangerous to Label Others
Broken Promises
The Broken Promise and the Family
Provide Support and Guidance to Families
Keys to Successful Transitions: Putting Your Best Foot Forward
A Good Idea to Help New Families
Customer Service and the Care Plan

Chapter 4: The Upset Family Member

Seeking to Understand Upset Family Members: From Adversary to Advocate
How to Approach the Upset Family
The Upset Husband
How Staff Can Make a Difference

Chapter 5: Train Staff Members to Provide Top-Notch Customer Service

Introducing SHARE to Staff
The SHARE Training Guide
Make SHARE Part of the Culture

Chapter 6: How to Measure Customer Satisfaction

The Survey Says ...
The Welcome Complaint
Handling the Complaint
Begin the Investigation
Find the Solution

Chapter 7: Engagement

Engagement as the Root of Customer Service
Back to School
What’s in a Name?
Engagement in Action

Chapter 8: Caring for Residents Affected by Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementia

Understanding Dementia
Staff Education

Chapter 9: Is That the 60 Minutes Van in the Parking Lot?

What the News Media Does to Get the Story
Crisis Plan
Ten Steps to Managing a Crisis