My name is Brooke.
Tara and I collectively make up the full-time administrative staff of Like Family Home Care. Our small office is in the heart of midtown Nashville, but we are serving clients in four counties. I am excited to be part of a home care agency committed to delivering quality family-like care through compassionate caregivers.
That sounds so simple, right?
Well, as any new small business owners/employees would probably tell you, it isn’t as simple as it sounds – but it is also much more rewarding than I expected. Here are some of the lessons we have learned on our journey thus far:
1. Strive for perfection, but don’t expect it.
In this industry, one day you may have little to no cases, and the next day you could have a 24/7 case that needs immediate staffing. This happened to us. Suffice it to say, it took an impressive amount of quick-thinking and pinch-hitting from me and Tara to meet that client’s needs quickly, responsibly and in a customized manner. As well as we did staffing this intense case, there were still times where caregivers called in sick (with pink eye!) or were a little late to a shift. We weren’t perfect. But, we were always there, no matter what! And, the client felt safe, secure and comforted in our presence.
We also had a client who had very high standards (a good thing – we always strive to exceed expectations), and this proved to be, um, interesting. One day, her caregiver was late because of weather (it had snowed that morning). The next day, the caregiver was actually rear-ended on the way to work, so was again, late. Understandably, the client was displeased with her caregiver showing up late, two days in the same week. https website list So, the next day the caregiver made an extra effort to get there on time, and ended up 30 minutes early. This also really displeased the client.
In summary, do your best. But that is all you can do – and you’ve just got to take it all in stride, roll with the punches, and any other pithy phrase you can think of related to realizing that as a human, you too, have limitations.
2. Prepare yourself to deal with every kind of personality.
Home care is just a bunch of PEOPLE trying to negotiate how one group can meet the other group’s needs in a satisfactory manner. So you can imagine that there are a lot of unique communication styles involved in such interactions. It isn’t always easy trying to bridge the gap between people from different backgrounds and perspectives, but we believe that with the right amount of honesty and kindness, any communication barrier can be resolved.
It just might take some directness, which for people like me (conflict is scary!), can be a growing experience!
3. You will glimpse some beautiful moments in people’s lives – the kind most people will never see.
Watching one of our elderly male Caucasian clients develop a special bond with one of our young African American male caregivers was really special. Finding out that a caregiver’s great-grandmother actually helped take care of the same client as a child that she was currently caring for was an “only in Nashville” moment and amazing. Knowing I have the chance to help our clients in a time of need and be a part of meeting that need in some small way is humbling.
All in all, I am learning that there are a lot of ups and downs in this industry, and all I can do is give everything I can and believe the best. And the “ups” make everything worth it.