What is Commonwealth University?
Commonwealth University is our affectionate term for the company’s learning and development strategy. Human Capital is the core of the company’s ability to deliver results; it’s all about the people. Each and every one of you is critical to our mission of providing world-class service and care to our residents. Our employees are not a labor expense – they are the most important people in the organization. Our front- line employees are the ones who take care of our residents. Part of our mission is supporting every employee through orientation, training, development, and continuous learning. By implementing a strategic plan for learning and talent development, we believe we are better positioned to do that.
Commonwealth University targets the “Human Capital Experience” from sourcing and recruiting to first impressions, onboarding, managing performance on the job, re-training, and development for top talent and bench strength. It is the overall strategy and there are various components to Commonwealth University.
What is New Associate Orientation?
All new associates should complete a new employment orientation program that is designed to assist them in adjusting to their jobs and work environment and to instill a positive work attitude and motivation at the onset. A thoughtful new associate orientation program can reduce turnover and save a community thousands of dollars. One reason people change jobs is because they never feel welcome or part of the organization they join. A solid orientation process takes energy, time and commitment; however it usually pays off for the individual associate, the department, and the organization. Using feedback collected from community leaders, regional team members, and executives – there is now a comprehensive New Associate Orientation being implemented at all communities. We are calling this program “Jump Start”!
What is the “Developing Leaders” Program?
- Personal Responsibility in Developing Excellence (PRIDE) – Leadership Orientation. Purpose is to take all new leaders through a short half day seminar on what it means to work at a Commonwealth Senior Living community. Focus on Noble Selling Purpose, our initiatives, and our Core Values. We give everyone a tour of our home office and end with an open discussion: “What’s going well?” “What are areas we can do better?” “What do you wish you had learned or known about day 1?”
- Breakthrough: Breakthrough is a 2-day learning experience for all supervisors in our Breakthrough will become required training for all new leaders in their first 6 months. Leaders going through Breakthrough gain a better perspective on “Impact vs. Intent” and aspects of leadership theory, a core basics of supervision/leadership, soft skills training, and leadership vs. management. Day 2 is a real time simulation. Attendees experience a work week condensed to one day. Must work together to overcome barriers (group dynamics, unspoken norms, missing info, mixed signals, etc.). We believe Breakthrough will give our leaders an assortment of “tools” to use and empower those they support.
- Top Talent Academy: Top Talent Academy is a 5-day leadership experience for selected team members. It is broken down into two sessions, typically 60 days apart. Session 1 includes aspects of leadership theory, group dynamics, “intent vs. impact”, self-directed learning, and a 360 process where our leaders reflect on who they are as a leader through feedback from a variety of levels. Session 2 builds on the experience with 2 more days focusing on emotional intelligence, “tops-middles-bottoms”, systems thinking, a group leadership challenge, and a graduation. The idea behind Top Talent Academy is to take solid, competent leaders and build their “leadership muscles” to be EXCEPTIONAL leaders.
Executive Director in Training (EDIT) Program: Our EDIT program is designed to prepare individuals to become an Executive Director at a Commonwealth Senior Living community. The program places our new executives on a distinctive career path. As program participants work directly with specific communities, they increase their expertise in many areas. They also develop valuable skills while absorbing the company culture. Through a combination of classroom instruction and on-the-job experience, they are able to learn from the best – our seasoned leaders in each functional area, Regional Leaders, and Executive Directors – and to use this knowledge as the foundation of a highly fulfilling career. The EDIT Program is the cornerstone of Commonwealth University.
FUTURE RCD PROGRAM: The purpose of the Future RCD Program is to invest in and prepare promising individuals for successful leadership roles in Resident Care and expand their potential as a leader in the health care profession. This four module program will provide a foundation for leadership development, crucial skills and a variety of resources in a supportive and encouraging environment. This program is specifically for current Assistant RCDs and LPNs (or other licensed nurses) in your communities.
Commonwealth University Faculty: Part of our strategy is certifying members of every discipline as “FACULTY” so that we can start scheduling courses and learning across the organization. We have certified faculty at each community but are always looking for more people to take on this challenge!