With this empathetic and intuitive approach, your home care agency will be uniquely positioned to profitably and efficiently deliver superior patient care, says Kristen Duell, CEO of Savii.
Caregivers are often critiqued on — and appreciated for — their bedside manner. How they speak to their patients clearly matters. The same should be true for everyone in your agency. Especially for agency owners and other managers — the words and tone that we use when communicating with caregivers is just as important.
All people want to feel understood and appreciated. Words matter. How we say them matters. Unfortunately, our desire for efficiency and productivity often causes us to lose focus on empathy and appreciation. Yet, those are the exact qualities that make our work rewarding and worthwhile.
Here are two examples that you can act on immediately to have a big impact on the health of your agency’s culture. For example, at Savii, we’ve stopped using the title “caretaker” in favor of “caregiver”. Why? Because “giving care” sounds more empathetic than “taking care of.” It’s not splitting hairs; the words you choose matter. Some of our customers have adopted the title of “care partners” for their field staff.
Another example: How often do you hear someone in our industry refer to caregivers as skilled versus unskilled? Now ask yourself, how would you feel if people called you unskilled? At Savii, we refer them as non-clinical positions. These vital roles require a different skill set, but one that also has to be developed and mastered. Changing how you describe them is a small but powerful step in the right direction.