Teamwork and compassion help weather the storm
I recently learned about something very special that occurred on the campus of Lutheran Home at Concord Reserve. A couple weeks ago, many of the staff members of this senior living campus in Westlake were keeping a close watch on the winter storm warning for northeast Ohio. A bad wintry mix of rain turning to ice, plus 8-12 inches of snowfall was possible. Those icy conditions and snowfall can cause power outages and hazardous road conditions.
The daily challenges of operating a senior healthcare facility intensify during bad weather, especially if deliveries are late, staff cannot safely drive to work or there is a sudden loss of power. CEO Charlie Rinne, administrator Kevin Kilbane and a team of managers began planning for the worst conditions and how to ensure the safety and well-being of its 152 residents.
Utmost on their mind was making sure that the campus was fully staffed for all three shifts. What I found to be particularly special is that eight managers and five additional staff members offered to stay and assist if necessary. Most of those non-clinical managers cannot provide any direct patient care but they were voluntarily willing to assist with a multitude of other tasks outside of their normal workday responsibilities.
From what I learned, it seemed like they had thought of everything! The facility provided Subway sandwich platters for the evening shift staff. Alternative meals were planned in case of a power outage that would prevent the kitchen staff from preparing its regular menu. The housekeeping staff made sure that staff members staying the night would have freshly cleaned places to rest and sleep. A team of drivers made up of staff members were ready and on call to pick up any staff member within a 10-mile radius who didn’t feel comfortable driving to work in the bad weather. They were also able to help anyone on campus who might be experiencing car trouble.
I was impressed that 13 staff members were willing to stay at work on a Friday night during a winter storm. What a great example of teamwork and compassion. They not only kept a close watch on a bad winter storm, but they kept a close watch on the needs of their residents, colleagues and friends.