I have been a thought partner for the Residence Manager of Caring House which is the first home for people at the end of life in the South Bay area of Los Angeles. Even though she is a very experienced clinician, the challenges of her role include working effectively with the founders who spent 18 years working(as volunteers) to open this special home. Additionally, she manages all aspects of the home including paid paraprofessional staff, volunteers and volunteer caregivers. We have worked through establishing personal boundaries so that she can maintain a family life ; this has included the very difficult task of asking for help, delegating to others and identifying others who can assume leadership roles. Although it has been gratifying to be the “expert”, she is realizing that it is not a sustainable role as the home expands to care for more people.
Although my first career was as a Hospice CEO, I am reminded of the profound impact of working with dying people. Hospice attracts mission driven individuals and it has been so meaningful to support this woman in this first year of operation. I have also learned that even though I have in-depth knowledge of the hospice field, I am adept (thanks to my Hudson training) at leading from behind. My knowledge informs the conversations and I don’t have to offer any advice, but rather, can help her explore and find her best answers and solutions.
— Claire Tehan (03/22/2017)