Our culture of compassion and respect sets United Church Homes apart, and our “I Live It” hospitality standards aim to show those we serve that we don’t just say it– we work to bring those values to life.
Leading the charge is Amy Kotterman, Director of Customer Experience. Kotterman has been an integral part of the UCH family for 30 years, serving as Corporate Dietician for 23 years. For the past six years, she held the role of Director of Hospitality. The evolution to Director of Customer Experience reflects our expanding focus on hospitality as a core value. “We are always looking for ways to move forward, asking ourselves what can we do differently to take our organization to the next level, ” shared Kotterman.
Together with UCH’s Chief Growth Officer, Terry Spitznagel, three pillars and corresponding teams were created to promote the I Live It! values: Living Life with Purpose, Social Connections and Safe and Sound.
Each pillar aims to create abundant life within our communities. “This is not a cookie-cutter approach. What’s important to you may not be important to someone else, but we won’t know unless we take the time to ask and truly listen,” explained Kotterman.
Kotterman shared this personalized approach can be simple as asking residents, “how do you prefer to learn”, “what are your interests?” or “what kind of assistance do you need here?” to more in-depth survey projects and resident engagement platforms. “We are looking to see where we can lean on technology to help us gather preference information so that every interaction with a resident, whether the staff member has a relationship with them or not, respects their wants and needs”, said Kotterman.
This evolution of our customer-focused culture includes a heightened awareness of the overall well-being of those who are on the front lines. “This past year has been hard on our residents and families, but also on our staff. We saw the need to create a quiet, peaceful space just for them. These Zen Dens have been so well-received that they’ve become a permanent feature in our future design plans,” Kotterman shared.
“These initiatives all center around our understanding that each one of us deserves to live with dignity, purpose and self-determination,” says Kotterman.
“We hear from so many different organizations what to expect in this ‘new normal,’ but we can create an abundant feature for residents.”