Building trust, workforce and choice are part of Argentum’s strategic planning process

Argentum President and CEO James Balda delivers his state of the industry address at the organization’s annual conference on Monday. (Photo by Lois Bowers)

MINNEAPOLIS — Taking into account lessons learned over the past two years, Argentum is working on a strategic plan for an industry seeking to build confidence while tackling the challenges of labor shortages, inflationary pressures and rebuilding occupancy levels.

Argentum President and CEO James Balda kicked off the association’s 2022 senior leadership conference on Monday by announcing the launch of a strategic planning process during a state of the art address. industry.

With the visibility of light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel, Balda said, the organization is looking to the future and engaging in “what will be perhaps the most important national public policy debate in a generation: how to care for American seniors.

To address the challenges and opportunities facing the retirement home industry, Balda said Argentum is looking to the next decade and planning for the next three years. This process, he said, will involve revisiting lessons learned from the pandemic to improve the future.

These areas of challenge are ripe for opportunity, the CEO said, including developing a diverse and equitable pool of talent and leadership, changing industry perceptions, meeting customer needs, providing affordable housing for older people and tackling the threat of “increasing and onerous regulatory burdens”. .”

Balda described “three big ideas” the industry needs to put in place to be successful over the next decade:

  1. People: Focus on the whole person to give seniors and employees meaning and purpose. “We live in a culture that lacks meaning and our communities provide incredibly meaningful work,” Balda said.
  2. Trust: Build and maintain trust between residents, families, employees, investors and regulators by using data and transparency to establish best practices and guidelines.
  3. Choice: Protect and expand consumer choice by creating customizable product options for consumers up and down the acumen scale.

Over the next three years, Balda said, Argentum’s strategic plan will set specific goals that address these “big ideas” through four strategic imperatives:

  • Develop People: Expand the pool of skilled talent and improve efficiencies to meet the needs of a growing population of older adults.
  • Measure what matters: Build trust with good data to improve care and improve transparency.
  • Tell the story of senior living: Become the voice of the senior living industry through advocacy.
  • Know the Residents: Facilitate the selection of new solutions and offerings among providers to meet the changing needs and expectations of residents.

In related news, Balda also said an Executive Director of Assisted Living, or EDAL, certificate course was officially launched at the conference. The course comprises 16 learning modules designed to provide current and future CEOs with the foundational information needed to effectively lead a community of seniors.

“At the heart of the industry”

The 2022 Argentum Hero Awards were also presented during the opening session of the State of the Industry Conference. Four people have been recognized for their “extraordinary” work over the past year and for being considered the “heart of the industry”, Balda said:

  • Jaimie Harel, former Business Advisor, Brookdale Springs Mesa, AZ (awarded posthumously)
  • Janie Whipple, Receptionist, Academy Point at Mystic, CT (Benchmark Senior Living)
  • Johnell Washington, Concierge, Victory Center of Forest Park, IL (Pathway to Living)

Additionally, Anthony Vaughns, Executive Director of New Perspective Senior Living, received the Senior Living Community Leadership Award.

Tom Grape, founder, president and CEO of award sponsor Benchmark Senior Living, said the senior living workforce inspires confidence in residents and families.

“The peace of mind that you provide now, more than ever, works wonders for our residents and their families,” he said.

Argentum reported that about 2,000 senior living executives attend its annual senior executive conference, which continues through Wednesday.

Louisa R. Loomis