A leader in the culture change movement administrator Eric Haider in Missouri told his teams he wanted to see something spontaneous take place every day on each neighborhood (moving away from the hospital term unit). Wow. What a brilliant man. We’ve learned that sometimes it pays to make a good mandate. Because of it wonderful things happened in the nursing home with the creativity of all team members (moving away from the nebulous term staff). From wagon rides to cook outs. Could you work with your leadership team/administrator to create a new mandate for each neighborhood to come up with something spontaneous every day? You could be the resource person; it is your specialty to find the resources for special ideas given. One team in Colorado got to such a spontaneous team mindset that CNAs would say, “Hey, I’ll take residents to Starbucks today if you stay back and you could take them tomorrow!” Wow. What would it take for you to guide and teach and get your fellow neighborhood teams to that point? Make a step in that direction
You could also create spontaneity by just starting to incorporate it even in the schedule/calendar. For instance, Movie -Resident Choice or Game – Resident Choice. Even more broadly it could just be Tues. 2:00 pm Resident Choice.
Spontaneity is considered a premise of changing institutional culture and the Eden Alternative brought the realization to us. It is known as Principle 5.
Principle 5 originally read like this:
An Elder-centered community imbues daily life wit variety and spontaneity by creatin an environment in which unexpected and unpredictable interactions and happenings can take place. This is the antidote to boredom.
And in the Eden Alternative’s refreshed version they make the point this way:
We thrive when we have variety, spontaneity, and unexpected happenings in our lives. This is the antidote to boredom.
And its true. Perhaps consider creating a focus for you, your team, those who live there, their family members and your wider team on spontaneity. Just see what happens by talking about it, welcoming it, and role modeling by doing it yourself. Maybe even mandate it.
Carmen Bowman, MHS, of Edu-Catering: Catering Education for Compliance and Culture Change is an activities/engagement consultant and culture change expert. New or not-yet-qualified activity director consultation and psychosocial wellbeing consulting for the whole team. As a Regulator turned Educator, Carmen also provides “be your own surveyor” training. Training videos now available on https://www.patreon.com/educatering