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Words of Encouragement

st clairsville nursing home
From L to R: Bob Speelman, Hope Baker, Carri Rejonis, Laura Schuler

September 15, 2019
I spent the day at Cumberland Pointe, our 90 bed facility in St. Clairsville. Carri Rejonis is the Executive Director there and Laura Schuler is the Director of Nursing. I had the privilege of working alongside Hope Baker an absolutely amazing STNA. Hope began working for us in Housekeeping and Laundry and then after a few years she took the STNA Classes that a sister facility in our company offers nearby. Hope said "I wanted to become an STNA because I wanted to help people."  I asked Hope if she had any desire to go on and become a nurse and without missing a beat she said, “No, I love the direct care and hand on with the residents. This is what I was meant to do.” I loved that answer!!

As we worked together throughout the day I would ask the residents that we were caring for what made Hope such a good nursing assistant. Below are some of the responses I received:

“She knows what she’s doing,”
"She doesn’t put on a show, she really cares!"
“She loves us.”

Besides the residents, many of Hope’s coworkers stopped me and said things like:

“She’s really good,”
“She’s such a team player,”
“You’re working with a really good one!”

At the end of the day as I was saying my goodbyes, Hope looked at me and said, “You should come work with me more often, it felt really good hearing all those nice things my residents and coworkers said about me.” On my drive home I thought about what Hope had said. I think sometime we take for granted that people know how we feel about them. Maybe we need to tell them more often how much we appreciate them.

I can remember at my very first administrator job in Miller, South Dakota, I was sitting in a resident’s room talking and a nursing assistant walked by, came in, and gave the resident a big hug and said, “Mary, I just love you!” and walked out. Mary turned to me and smiled and said, “I could live on that for months!”

What would happen in our facilities in we all made a little more effort to tell our coworkers and residents how much we appreciate them? How would that make you feel if a coworker went out of their way to encourage you and to tell you how much they appreciate you? How would that help spread our Culture of Care?

“Instruction does much, but encouragement everything."
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Bob Speelman, STNA

Bob's Blog

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Cumberland Pointe Website

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