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Now is the Time

Author: Steve Chies, Co-Chair Vision 2025

It is highly unlikely that anyone would disagree that 2020 has been a most challenging year. The uncertainty, challenges of confusing requirements, and the inability to see an end to the pandemic have created a general sense of doom and gloom. Now is the time for leadership to lead in the senior care sector. And the need in the future for highly effective leaders is even more critical to assure long term sustainability.

As I consider the impact of this year and what might happen going forward and compared it to 1918 and the challenges many Minnesotans had faced. Obviously, another pandemic was raging across the state and the world, similarly to what we are facing today. Secondly the United States was in the midst of a world war in Europe. Finally, the Minnesota had experienced a series of massive forest fires in the northern parts of Minnesota. All within that most difficult year!

The cohort population at that time, the “Greatest Generation”, were alive and being born. They went on to live thru the Stock market crash of 1929, the Great Depression that followed, and a second world war. Interestingly, they also saw the passage of the New Deal legislation of 1935 that started Social Security and other beneficial changes to federal laws. They then participated in the great economic expansion of the 1950’s that created the interstate highway system, new suburbs with schools, and infrastructure to support it all. This cohort has been characterized by their resiliency, sacrifice, community focus, and hard work. These are all key elements that can assist in the development of highly effective leaders for the senior care sector.

The VISION 2025 group is a collaboration of stakeholders working to create educational model to train future leaders for the senior care positions. We need to develop leaders with those traits. They will need to have knowledge, skills, and characteristics that will let them lead the senior care sector to care for this large cohort of boomers (77 million) as they age. These leaders will need to exhibit the grit and tenacity that got the Greatest Generation their most difficult periods. By reaching the goals of VISION 2025, the future leadership demands for senior care sector can be met.