Archive for the ‘Press’ Category

2012 Festival of Faiths “Compassion In the Workplace” Program

January 10th, 2013 by Stephen Bowling

At the Recent 2012 Festival of Faiths, held here in Louisville, KY, Signature CEO Joe Steier and Vice President of Spirituality Dianne Timmering participated in a panel discussion about “Compassion In the Workplace”.

Courtesy of the Festival of Faiths, below is the video for the complete event.


Signature Home Office Adopts Resident Angels

December 27th, 2012 by Stephen Bowling

Last year during her days of service at our Spencer County facility, Home Office Stakeholder Lynn Duvall noticed a need.

Lynn was helping out at this facility which is located close to the home office (where she works in the Accounting Department) when the subject of the approaching Christmas holidays came up.

“There are some residents in this building who have no families to speak of and who very likely will not receive any gifts at all this Christmas” she was told.

That was all she needed to hear.

Working with the Chaplain of that particular building she was able to provide for the needs of several residents last year, and this year she expanded the program outward through the Spirituality Department to include all of the local facilities near the Home office.

Taking the list of names and needs provided via the chaplains, Lynn started emailing coworkers she knew fairly well and asked if they would be interested in providing gifts this Holiday Season for these individuals in time for the gift-giving events taking place in their respective facilities. Once the word got out, the program expanded to include the entire Home Office.

The response was tremendous.

Through word of mouth and emails, Lynn was able to help over twenty local residents who would have received very little this Christmas. The outpouring of love and care from the Signature stakeholders to the precious residents for whom we all care was indeed a wonderful gift.

“Compassion in the Workplace” Session, November 16, 2012 – Festival of Faiths, Louisville, KY

November 26th, 2012 by Stephen Bowling

“Compassion in the Workplace” session on November 16, 2012 dream from the Festival of Faiths in Downtown Louisville, KY

by E. Joseph Steier and Dianne Timmering

Our move back to Louisville two years ago seemed perfectly timed with a city-wide charge to create and launch a “lifelong wellness and aging” movement that we could play a major role in. At the same time, the expanding Festival of Faiths International conference was growing and the launching of the compassionate city charter by our new mayor that we were blessed to sign-on early, made it a divine exodus from south Florida seem like a dream come true.

Last week, as Dianne and I sat in a packed room with standing room only, we are surrounded by business leaders, top researchers, spiritual leaders, and just really engaged people getting ready to dig into a panel discussion on “compassion in the workplace” and hear about our spirituality model and other models which link the spiritual and compassion to human well-being. Dr. James Doty, a Stanford neuro-surgeon, and leader in altruism and compassion, started off our panel with the thought on what is compassion, what is non-compassion where one feels no part of anything. Does the lack of compassion in the workplace lead to bad stress and issues with productivity? And what is the cost of bad stress in biased decision making, weakened performance?

There were more deserving leaders than Dianne and me, like Paul Thompson with Bridgeman Foods, Tori Murden McClure, the famed president of Spalding University, and Phil Marshall, CEO and president of Hosparus, the panel sponsor.

But here are the takeaways, we really want to dig into-

People are starting to notice Louisville and the Compassionate City charter -this can be a framework and healing ideology to unify our divided culture and heritage in the same way Merton’s epiphany manifested; a rebirth and transcendence a foot in the stream of our city’s people.

Conference attendees came from everywhere in the U.S. included several delegations from Canada to experience this event. And so is the Dali Lama next May coming to our fair town to embrace this soulful city, to expand this compassionate city charter and contemplative partnership so the vision that Thomas Merton delivered in Bangkok the day he died (Dec. 10th, 1968) visualizing an east-west spiritual balance between western self-directed personal empowerment and eastern selfless reflection can merge to capture what are both mankind’s greatest attributes.

Remember, I did not like the previous workplace environment that I worked in very much either but we may be at the end of the western highly directive command center business model that gave corporate a bad name in the workplace anyway. This will be the next industry leadership cycle requiring embracing the concept of shared leadership, collaborative external partnerships, real transparency, embracing servant leadership where we all must know the work . . . So . . . why not try being a compassionate workplace by being an early adopter if it’s going to happen.

Is compassion rooted in ancient religion? All compassion really means is that to be human is to embrace suffering–knowing it is an intersection to fellow man. If we share and reflect upon it, that everyone’s journey is equal in divine purpose, then we can drive toward the attempt at being present while possessing a non-judgmental awareness. God knows in me, that to feel deep personal suffering made me embrace forgiveness as the only way to heal and stay close to God. And knowing that we were on a parallel track of convergence with everyone in this room make us just feel more connected.

During the panel we learned a ton. One key learning jewel: Dr. Doty made an important point about the compassionate workplace state of mind . . . we must be totally self-aware, if there is a problem that you as a leader are the reason it exists, the critical party that must accept fault for it not being in optimal state, only then can you can help lead the real solution and create the condition around you so everyone owns the collective win . . . something we need to continue to embrace.

Then the magic happens . . . the science of Happiness occurs–your stakeholders have freedom from fear, a new sense of control, relationships with building trust, and they can contribute to something bigger than you and them for the opportunity of transcendence and purpose because you have given them the compassion to be.

EVENT – “Compassion in the Workplace” as part of the 17th Annual Festival of Faiths

November 13th, 2012 by Stephen Bowling

The “Compassion In the Workplace” Event, which is in conjunction with the 17th Annual Louisville Festival of Faiths, will be held this Thursday November 15th from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. in Russell Hall at the Kentucky Center for African American Heritage which is located at 1701 West Muhammad Ali Boulevard in downtown Louisville, KY.

Local business leaders who are known for their business acumen and their compassionate work settings, such as Bridgeman Foods CEO Junior Bridgeman, Spalding University President Tori Murden McClure and Signature Healthcare CEO Joe Steier and Signature Healthcare Vice President of Spirituality Dianne Timmering, will be special guests at this event.

More details about the event can be found on the Festival of Faith’s website.

VIDEO – “Walk A Mile In A CNA’s Shoes”

October 30th, 2012 by Stephen Bowling

I would like to show everyone a new video Signature has produced entitled “Walk A Mile in a CNA’s Shoes”:

PRESS – Louisville Courier Journal Covers Signature Senior Olympics

October 12th, 2012 by SHC Spirituality

The Louisville Courier Journal newspaper did an article on the 2012 Senior Olympics that were held at the Signature Home Office in Louisville on Wednesday October 10th.

From the article:

The games are “about passion, purpose and the celebration of life,” said Dianne Timmering, Signature’s Vice President of Spirituality. “I don’t think the competitive spirit ever ends.”

Check out the entire article HERE which includes a 33 item photo slide show.

PRESS – Long-Term Living Magazine Interview

September 21st, 2012 by SHC Spirituality

I recently did an interview with Long-Term Living Magazine which is currently on their website.

As stated in the article, Signature’s Dianne Timmering, vice president of spirituality, speaks with Long-Term Living’s Associate Editor Pamela Tabar on how the company’s bold experiment has become a hallmark of its leadership, an industry example in employee management and an unexpected marketing driver.”

Pamela Tabar, editor of the magazine informs us that “the Q&A with you has been on our website’s “most popular stories” list for the past 2 days!!”

The entire interview can be viewed HERE.

Prayer From The Elder Serve Luncheon

July 12th, 2012 by SHC Spirituality

Recently our CEO Joe Steier and several company’s representatives attended a luncheon hosted by Elderserve, Inc. in Louisville, KY where Joe was presented with the 2012 Champion for the Aging Award.

I was aksed to offer the prayer for the luncheon, the text of which is presented below.
Dear God. We love you so much and are honored to be here today as a collective community to celebrate life in any season. We thank you because we can gather freely and express ourselves in whatever multitude of manner we might choose.

We thank you for the opportunity to serve both you and our precious elders. Stay with us always. Put your loving arms around us and the vulnerable rich people we serve.

Let us not turn a blind eye to such wisdom perhaps still unlocked in their grip. Let us embrace their wisdom and exquisite beauty. Thank you for their service and courage in the building of our nation and the loving care they provided to so many of us in the room.

We are a byproduct of their greatness. Let us never forget this, and that purpose reigns in every breath. Bless elderserve and all their affiliates and their 50 great years committed to nurturing a maturing life still so full with many gifts to  give.

Bless the businesses and organizations represented here today.  Bless all to overflow. Pressed down shaken together. Bless this food. Bless it to the nourishment of our body. And bless
all hands. Amen



PRESS – Louisville Courier-Journal Newspaper Features Signature HealthCARE and our Spirituality Department

July 3rd, 2012 by SHC Spirituality

Signature HealthCARE was featured in a front-page story in the Louisville Courier-Journal newspaper.

This article was about spirituality and its integration in the workplace and Signature’s pioneering role in this innovation.

To read the article, click HERE

PRESS – Business First Article – “Spirituality Plays a Valuable Role in the Workplace”

July 2nd, 2012 by SHC Spirituality

The June 29th edition of Business First Magazine featured an article written by our good friend Dr. Rick Underwood and me entitled “Spirituality Plays A Valuable Role in the Workplace”.

The entire text of the article is below, or you can view it free on Business First’s website HERE.

Spirituality plays a valuable role in the workplace
by Dianne H. Timmering and Rick Underwood

Are there appropriate ways that spirituality can play a positive role in the workplace while respecting diversity issues? There are some for-profit organizations who think the answer is a resounding “yes.”

Through the years, faith-based, nonprofit organizations such as hospitals often were the only workplaces that placed an emphasis on faith development and growth in spirituality. That is changing as more for-profit organizations experience the value of promoting spirituality among their staff and clients.

Some, such as Signature HealthCare, are integrating spirituality into their business plan while enjoying positive business outcomes. Signature, for example, launched its grass-roots spirituality program in 2005, focusing on spiritual care delivery with a dedicated chaplain and spirituality program for each long-term care center.

Qualitative and quantitative results confirmed the need for well-trained chaplains in spiritual care as it related to employee empowerment, meeting residents and their family members at the very point of need, and improved therapy and clinical outcomes.

For Signature, spirituality became an issue of the heart, founding the program on unconditional love for all faiths and cultures. Educating the Signature chaplain corps on tenets of understanding, listening, and humility was key to the spirituality program’s early success as well as encouraging the love and respect for one’s “neighbor,” regardless of religious or philosophical affiliation.

Members of the Signature community began to learn from one another with the barriers down. Now God (of each person’s understanding) in the workplace is a part of the fabric of their culture, from recruiting to decision-making. Purpose and personal mission, which all of mankind eventually pursues, are explored and encouraged.

Background of the movement

The roots of spirituality in the workplace began in the 1920s as individuals sought to live their faith and spiritual values in the workplace. Through the years, the interest in finding creative ways to integrate spirituality into the workplace has grown.

Some trends that led to this interest were:

• Mergers and acquisitions that destroyed the sense of security for workers and led some to seek forms of inner security;

• A global economy that called into question long-term economic viability;

• A decline of mainline church attendance because, for many, the message was no longer relevant;

• Baby boomers facing retirement who began to ask questions about meaning and purpose.

A new focus on spirituality

In the workplace today, terms such as transformation, transcendence, meditation and soul have become commonplace. Many workers in a knowledge-based business environment want to bring their entire self to work: body, mind and spirit.

It now is apparent that interest in matters of spirituality is shared by active members of faith groups of all kinds, by people whose religious practices have lapsed and by those who seek purpose, especially when it is lacking or seems to be unidentifiable.

Implications of spirituality in the workplace

Spirituality is essential to health, credibility, trustworthiness, respect, fairness, meaning of work, sense of community, creativity, commitment, ethical behavior and productivity. Recent unethical behavior among top corporate executives has confirmed the need for integrity and ethical behavior. Fortune magazine found that corporations that adhere firmly to integrity based on these values have a 50 percent higher growth rate.

Traditionally, the term “religion” has been associated with an institutional community that practices faith in a specific tradition or creed. In contrast, the word “spirituality” in the workplace is being treated as an alternative or, in some cases, a complement to religion that involves focusing on a particular way of thinking about self, others, work and organizations.

Promoting spirituality in the workplace

Activities that promote spirituality in the workplace include:

• Servant leaders/employee assistance programs (or less of a need for such);

• Programs in diversity, bereavement, wellness and stress management;

• Support groups and prayer systems;

• Management and leadership systems that promote growth, development and transformation;

• Encouragement of creativity, self-expression and innovation;

• Feedback systems that help all walk the talk of the values of the organization;

• Brown-bag lunch discussions of similarities of different faith group beliefs and practices.

As the world faces many uncertainties in the future, new strategies that integrate spirituality as one of the core business functions can help bridge the generational gaps, empower people through a spiritual intelligence of gained wisdom, inspire and retain a loyal work force, create outstanding customer service, contribute to the development of a global future story and ensure financial sustainability.

Rick Underwood is managing partner and performance consultant for Leadership Management Institute in Louisville. Dianne H. Timmering is vice president of spirituality for Signature HealthCare in Louisville.