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When village manager Di Burgess won a chef-catered dinner in a raffle she invited her residents

Village managers are a special breed and it is great to celebrate their generosity and affection of their residents.

Di Burgess, who has been village manager at Wesley Mission’s John Wesley Gardens in Geeberg, Brisbane, for the past 13 months after being Manager of Cooper House for three years, won a chef-catered dinner in a raffle to raise funds for Wesley Mission Queensland’s Eden Fun and Lifestyle Activity programmes.

The intention of the prize was to have a home dinner party, but Di chose instead to share her winnings with eight lucky residents and a staff member in the formal dining room at the aged care home.

Personalised invitations were hand-delivered to the selected residents and a staff member invited with a request that they wear their finest threads.

The three-course meal with matching wines was made even more special as it was cooked by Operations Manager Brian Wilson, who is also a chef.

Facility Manager Village Operator

Piano donation lifts the village (and aged care) soul

Moving into the retirement village, Barry and Helen Bawden OAM, gifted their 100 year old piano, which Helen’s father had bought second hand when she was 14. She owned it for more than 60 years and is delighted that it is now bringing joy to others.

Helen, who with her husband lives at Carinity Brownesholme retirement village at Highfields, Toowoomba, QLD, which is adjacent to The Residences at Brownesholme aged care site. is delighted Clare Bothmann, a friend of hers who now lives at Brownesholme, is one of the residents who enjoys playing the piano.

Brownesholme aged care Residential Manager, Jane Mackney, said music is a popular communal activity in the aged care community which brings much joy to residents.

“Playing the piano helps our residents with their cognitive abilities and dexterity and singing along to the music has therapeutic benefits. As soon as our residents hear the piano being played, they come out of their rooms,” Jane said.

Key things to help you everyday Latest industry developments

Tips on how to retain your workforce despite ‘the great resignation’

There are ways to keep your workforce despite this survey by ELMO Software, whose poll data is linked to the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics, finding 31 per cent of workers plan to quit their current job this year.

Almost a fifth say this will do so without having another job lined up. But employers and managers can try and prevent it.

Samantha Young, Managing Director of Human Pathology, urges employers to:

  1. get the culture right (it eats strategy for breakfast) and create meaning and purpose;
  2. offer genuine work flexibility and role crafting;
  3. empower holistic wellbeing and recognise burnout early;
  4. offer professional and personal development opportunities to foster deliberate self-innovation;
  5. conduct “stay interviews” and provide small morale boosts frequently. Look for ways to provide rewards to say thank you for being part of the team;
  6. create safety at work including managing the spread of COVID in the workplace and psychological safety;
  7. train managers to lead hybrid teams effectively.

It’s a lengthy list but try and introduce at least some of it to keep your workers.

Workloads today

In Melbourne, while filming the first episodes of our NINE Network TV series The Best 30 Years, a village manager reminded DCM Group CEO Chris Baynes of his first newsletter editorial 17 years ago where he discussed the pay rate of $65,000 for village managers being inadequate then.

The village manager pointed out that not only is the regulatory world far different and more complex now, but the Government is also auditing and enforcing regulations. While not divulging their pay scale, the fact is that village managers average wage remains at $80,000 nationally. That is a $15,000 increase in 17 years.

Another discussion when considering retention.

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Online portal for NSW retirement village operators

The NSW Government now has the authority to accumulate and publish relevant retirement village information and it means work is getting even busier.

NSW retirement village operators have been required to disclose the following information to the state government:

  • Name, address and contact details for the retirement village and operator;
  • Information about the Residents Committee (if any);
  • The number of units;
  • Residency type;
  • Information about complaints handled internally by the village operator/s;
  • Village contracts or pricing;
  • Demographic information about residents and staff;
  • Any other management and operation details.

Operators will also be required to collate and provide their updated information within one month of the end of subsequent financial years.

If operators do not comply with these requirements there is a potential penalty and on the spot fines. For corporations, this could mean penalties of up to $11,000 and on the spot fines of $2,200.

What’s the information for?

NSW Government has developed an online portal and operators have to open an account to have access. The portal is scheduled to be live for public use next year.

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Register for the Village Summit in five capital cities next month

Please join us at our VILLAGE SUMMIT 2022, to be staged in our five mainland capital cities commencing in November through to December.

VILLAGE SUMMIT 2022 brings together a master list of speakers from a range of fields – including legal experts, marketing professionals, and industry veterans – to provide a day packed with valuable learning opportunities and will inspire delegates for personal and business growth in 2023.

Purpose is an organisation’s reason for existing beyond just the financial, and a village manager epitomises this every day.

With a clear purpose of your own, you’ll improve engagement with colleagues and residents, achieve business goals faster, and enjoy a sense of direction in what you are doing, and in your career.

The VILLAGE SUMMIT begins in Adelaide’s premiere entertainment destination SkyCity on 3 November, before hitting Brisbane‘s sumptuous W Brisbane on 8 November. Then it’s Perth, Brisbane and Sydney.

The VILLAGE SUMMIT is recognised as a DCM Institute Professional Development Day and DCMI members are our guests.

Other delegate registrations are $995+GST.

Full program of speakers will be released next week.

For all the details and registration, click here. It’s an event not to be missed.