Predictive Results Business Adviser Dolly Penland recently wrote an article for the Florida Assisted Living Association. To read the story on page 14 published in the fall edition of “Aspire“, the FALA publication, please go to this link: http://www.mydigitalpublication.com/publication/?i=278334. The magazine is filled with articles designed to inform and educate FALA’s members.
The Secret to Assisted Living Success
By Dolly Penland
Every assisted living community is unique, from their amenities to the services they provide. The people who staff each facility, however, from top to bottom, are its most important asset and what actually makes it unique. It’s imperative then to find the right people for each position, those who are aligned with the culture and values of the organization.
But beyond the bare facts of a resume, how can you tell if someone is the right fit? Personal observation alone cannot predict performance. However, behavioral science and human capital analysis using systems such as the Predictive Index (PI) can. The Predictive Index is an EEOC-compliant behavioral assessment that specifically measures work-related behaviors.
Ebenezer, part of Fairview Health Services in Minneapolis, currently has five skilled nursing facilities, 16 assisted living facilities, and more than 2,100 employees. They are in the process of opening another five assisted living facilities this year.
“Assisted living is our primary growth area,” said Nancy Anderson, vice president of planning and organizational development, Fairview Senior Services. “It’s very important that we use all the tools at our disposal to select the people who will be most successful in leading those communities. [PI] has been helpful in helping us select the right people.”
Ebenezer uses the Predictive Index as one element in considering new hires for all of its leadership roles, such as the executive director, positions that are critical to the success of the organization.
“The ideal executive director is going to be customer-focused, and results-oriented,” said Anderson in explaining the desired behavioral attributes. “They are going to have to have the ability to think quickly on their feet. They are going to have to manage multiple things simultaneously and be able to create a strong team.”
Understanding a candidate’s natural behavioral drives and motivations lets clients use behavioral interviewing questions, which create a much richer and more insightful interview.
“We use it as part of our interviewing process and once we have the results of their PI, we tailor our interviewing questions based on those results,” said Anderson. “If someone appears from their PI that they have a particular characteristic or preference, we can ask questions that surface how they accommodate situations where it’s the opposite of their natural behaviors.”
The PI system also includes management and leadership development training, providing in-depth insight for managers to manage, motivate and drive performance for each individual.
“It helps us understand what motivates people,” said Jill Nokleby Kaiser, director of housing development, Ebenezer. “Every employee can do things better; PI gives you an opportunity to coach them [to improve performance]. No one is 100% cut out for every job. There’s something that everyone can do better. You can help coach to do that. It’s a great tool.”
Anderson adds that Ebenezer is also consistently honored as a Top 100 Workplaces in MN. “Although I can’t attribute that recognition solely to using the PI, I believe that our effort to find the right people and the right fit contributes to this honor,” said Anderson.
MBK Senior Living, one of Modern Healthcare Magazine’s “Best Places to Work in Healthcare in 2009”, uses PI to determine how individual employees fit into the team culture and how best to develop them for long-term success.
According to Terry Howard, CEO, MBK Senior Living, “We are clearly in the people business – our people are the key to providing the very best service and care to our seniors. It’s imperative for my organization to have the right people in the right jobs. There is no question that PI has been instrumental in doing that at MBK Senior Living. PI is also a critical tool in understanding individual work styles, as well as building and coaching teams to work effectively with each other, which ultimately leads to greater job satisfaction and retention. Using PI, we can ensure that employees are aligned with a job that best fits their behavioral style. Our company’s turnover, since implementing PI, has gone from 70% to 39%, which for our industry is exceptional.”
Assessment tools such as PI provide a better understanding of the various personality types in a company and how they fit together. The system is also designed as a comprehensive approach to talent from hire to retire, with applications such as placement, conflict resolution, team building and leadership development.
“With so many applications, hiring is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the capability and the benefit of using Predictive Index,” said Howard. “PI allows one to identify the behavioral styles of each member of a team so they can work together more effectively. In working to continuously improve our business, our managers use PI to study their team’s PI profiles to identify the different communication styles that may complement or conflict with each other. PI has been extremely valuable to team building, job alignment, and performance.”
Wellesley, Massachusetts-based Benchmark Assisted Living has more than 40 communities and more than 3,500 employees. Turnover is costly, which is why Benchmark emphasizes hiring and then retaining the people who best embody the organization’s culture and values.
Benchmark’s turnover rate is almost half of the industry’s average, which its leadership credits to using PI in its people management process.
“The Predictive Index is absolutely part of the Benchmark culture,” said Jill Haselman, senior vice president of organizational development, Benchmark. “It’s part of our language. Everybody knows what it is and it’s a critical tool in how we manage our talent and how we grow people.”
Benchmark conducts an annual cultural survey of the employees. One of the findings is that the effectiveness of management has resulted in reduced turnover and increased loyalty.
According to Haselman, “As hard as we have worked to build a great culture and drive loyalty and engagement, I can’t imagine having to do that without the use of the Predictive Index, and can only imagine that our loyalty scores would be significantly lower and our turnover scores would be significantly higher if we didn’t have the insight of the Predictive Index.”
When considering a behavioral assessment tool, ask if it is:
1) EEOC compliant for selection
2) Available in multiple languages
3) Short form or long form
4) Free choice or forced choice
Behavioral Assessments Drive Results
- Decide which metrics you want to improve
- Choose a tool that has proven success in that area
- Make sure you can customize the target pattern to your culture
- Ensure that it is EEOC compliant
- Use it as a pre-interview screen to get the best results
Dolly Penland is a business adviser and speaker with Predictive Results who works with organizations helping them to hire and manage their talent to their highest potential. She was an award-winning freelance journalist with more than 20 years’ experience specializing in business news before focusing her talents on business advice and consultation. Penland specializes in multiple areas including helping businesses grow sales, reduce turnover and develop leaders.
She can be reached at (904) 374 9914 or Dolly@PredictiveResults.com.