Brookdale Chief Executive Officer Cindy Baier recently painted a picture of opportunity for students who are preparing for careers in hospitality. She shared stories and details about the fulfilling and creative work to be found in the senior living industry. Baier was the featured speaker in Dean Dennis Reynolds’ Distinguished Leadership Series at the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management, part of the University of Houston. Much of her talk reflected the mission-driven aspect of senior living and the sense of purpose that many associates in the field experience every day.
In a Zoom discussion, Baier shared the creative challenges in dining and resident engagement, outlining the differences from the familiar routines within the hotel industry. Then she talked about the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on senior living. She discussed the creativity that associates have brought to their work in helping to keep Brookdale’s residents as safe as possible, while also helping to engage them with their families during social distancing and isolation required by the pandemic.
Baier’s advice for students was to, "challenge yourself and don’t set limits. Believe that anything is possible if you work hard, partner with others and lead by example in a way that other people will want to follow."