The senior care industry is growing and changing every day to ensure that residents continue to have what they want, and what they need, while aging. It is an exciting time to be serving seniors, and there are always opportunities to advance your position and create the career you have always wanted. Whether you’re seeking your first promotion or your 10th, everyone can benefit from a few pointers on how to get noticed and snag the position you’ve had your eye on.
Know Where You’re Going
Before you can work toward a promotion or new position within your senior living community, you need to have an idea of where you want to go. Although your plans can certainly be flexible as your life changes, writing down goals can start your career map.
Grab a notebook and brainstorm about what positions you would like during the course of your tenure at your community and within the senior industry. If you aren’t sure which positions could work for you, jot down your strengths and what you’re interested in. This exercise can point you in the right direction.
Seek Out Feedback
When you sit down with your supervisor for your annual review, be sure you are taking time to talk about your short- and long-term goals, as well as seeking feedback and advice on how to get there. Annual reviews nearly always guarantee you undivided attention from your supervisor, which you can use to talk about your career path and ambitions.
However, you don’t have to only ask for advice and feedback once per year, or from your supervisor. Seek out a mentor in your organization who has a position you would like and talk with them about their career path and lessons they have learned. You can educate yourself and avoid the mistakes they made.
No one knows what the future of senior care looks like, but it is imperative that you stay on top of trends and best practices. One way to do this is to attend continuing education classes in your local area; look for classes from your local Alzheimer’s Association or other senior living professional organizations. If you need additional formal education or certifications for your role, take classes online, or at your local university.
Senior living can sometimes feel stagnant, but that doesn’t mean you have to be. Tackle problems at your job with creative solutions, instead of complaining about the status quo. Listen to what residents and their family members want, and develop solutions that could meet those needs. Creativity is a hot commodity in our industry, and an easy way to get noticed by your immediate supervisors, as well as upper management.
Lead By Example
Anyone can be a leader, regardless of title. Assure you are leading by example, following policies and best practices with residents throughout your day. Consistently go above and beyond for those you serve, and keep a positive attitude. You’ll find that your energy will be contagious, and that everyone around you will enjoy working together even more.
Network and Collaborate
The senior living industry is full of professionals who know exactly what you are going through at your job on a daily basis. It’s wonderful to connect with other professionals in the senior field for understanding and for sharing what works (and what doesn’t). Involve yourself in networking groups and events in your local area, find ways to host events at your own community, or speak during a meeting.Speaking of networking, The Arbor Company’s Talent Network is the perfect place to discover what senior living jobs might suit you and your strengths. Our team serves seniors throughout the country, and we are committed to developing leaders within our own ranks. Join our Talent Network today, and discover which career path is waiting for you.