2020 December

Thoughts on Accountability

by Karen Lehman, MHS President/CEO

Like many others right now, I am completely drawn in to the Netflix series, The Crown.  

The perspective on history has been really interesting, but what has given me the most pause is the duality of the character’s role, the legal side and her personal needs and feelings; the challenge of accountability that the Queen experiences. 

I’ve found myself feeling truly sorry for the difficult position that she is in as head of the Church, head of the Monarchy and yet she’s a wife, mother, sister, daughter – a person with personal and family interests and obligations. 

Of course, it’s very hard to say that I feel sorry for the Queen of England! But the challenge and personal heartache that the Queen experiences, as portrayed in this show, always prioritizing church, country and monarchy, before her own good, is daunting to consider.  There is real tension in loosening the tight reins and control in the Monarchy to allow for the changing times. 

This show has made me think a lot about accountability: the moral obligation that a leader has as an executive to a Board, to stakeholders and clients that are served, and in relationship to an associated faith or church.  Where are the boundaries of a leader’s accountability? 

When is it appropriate to share and act on personal views and values versus the faith, values and expectations of those that are served?  Is it ever appropriate that a leader acts on their personal beliefs and values if those are knowingly different than what the moral owners stand for?

The answers to these questions are not simple.  As so many things such as health care, science, and individual rights have become political issues in the United States, the need to consider our individual accountability, along with faith and values becomes even more important.  Maybe, like me, you will grapple with these questions for a little while.  I’d love to have generative conversation on this topic sometime in a Mennonite Health Assembly setting (after we are all vaccinated and safe to meet in person again!).

2020 December

Peace on Earth

by Clare Krabill, MHS COO

“And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men,”

Luke 2:13-14

With this heavenly birth announcement came the good news of the ushering in of peace on earth. The English word, peace, is a pale representation of its Hebrew counterpart, shalom, which embodies a much grander notion of well-being, peace and wholeness. As Christians, we are invited to participate in God’s work of shalom-making. As health and social service ministries, your organizations, empowered by your colleagues, volunteers, clients, and communities, work together to foster shalom. 

So often we measure organizational success through a positive bottom line or the positive standing of your organization in your community, instead of through the evidence of shalom. Only the success which is produced from integrity and includes the well-being of all is shalom success. One way to think of this is that shalom exists where conditions are as they ought to be. 

Intentional accountability structures are one way to evaluate with transparency if conditions are as they ought to be. These can come in many forms: peer groups or relationships; clear reporting to constituents on key metrics; agreed upon and well-communicated methods for resolving conflicts; community focus groups; and policies to support diversity, equity and inclusion among others.  

The shalom gifted to us through Christ is grand, comprehensive, and eternal. Conversely, the product of your integrity as your organization seeks the well-being of your employees and those you serve can frequently be found in the details and minutiae of daily life. During this Christmas season, may you pause to consider God’s gift of peace on earth and how, though your daily work and interactions, you may share and foster that peace.

2020 December Your Words

Your Words Responses for December

What is an innovative process your organization has employed for staff recruitment or retention during the pandemic?

For recruitment, we have done a couple virtual job fairs through Indeed. We have done some zoom meeting interviews as well.

For retention, we have partnered with We Care Connect to do Onboarding surveys. We are able to address concerns quickly, preventing someone from possibly leaving. We have also shown our appreciation through bonuses, gifts and special treats. One treat that was very popular was a local Coffee truck came out and served specialty coffees and teas!!

Reminding supervisors that simple, sincere thank you’ s go a long way as well. Not really innovative, just a reminder of the basics.

Keeli Looper, VP of HRat Tel Hai Retirement Community

For the recruitment area we have employed many virtual events and instituted a same day offer on the interview day. If we like them we offer and do not wait to compare with other candidates. We are also cutting down the time of offer to stat day as much as we can. This sometimes means doing on demand orientations rather then the large group presentations.

Mike Scheuren, VP of Talent and Culture at Frederick Living
2020 December

Navigating Your Procurement Strategy

As 2020 concludes, Care Purchasing Services (CPS) rejoices the achievements and recognizes the challenges that the pandemic has created for communities, staff and residents. Our goal at CPS is to understand what matters most to your community and support your procurement needs as you continue to navigate the pandemic and the new year. As MHS’s dedicated Client Account Manager, Dianne Piet is available to serve as an extension to your team by supporting your strategic plan, whether it is new technology to improve the resident’s experience, utility savings to put cash back in your reserve, or the installation of an air purification system.

CPS will continue to provide pandemic support with a multitude of solutions, the weekly COVID-19 Communication, and much more. The COVID-19 Communication is an essential resource that provides an array of information from PPE availability, sanitizing systems, vaccines, etc. Plus, Dianne is available to assist your team with navigating the daily pandemic procurement needs.

In the new year, leverage your no cost membership to navigate your procurement strategies. It offers exclusive discount pricing and access to national vendors with quality products and services. CPS carefully vets vendor partners and holds them to the highest standards per the following categories.

  • Administrative
  • Clinical
  • Culinary
  • Environmental
  • Healthcare, Therapy, and Exercise Equipment
  • New Construction and Renovation
  • Plant Operations
  • Technology

Dianne is ready to work with you in 2021. To get started, contact Dianne Piet by phone 603-935-7923 or email For additional CPS information, visit