On this episode of the LTC Heroes podcast, Stacey Pickering, Executive Director at Mississippi Veterans Affairs, sits down with us to share his expertise on leadership and branding in the LTC industry. 


LTC Leadership


Stacey points out the fact that you can never be static as a leader. Challenges will arise, you’ll find solutions for those challenges, and the cycle will repeat. The key is to always assess where the root causes of issues are and face them head-on. He also describes the importance of knowing how hard to push your team and truly listening to their feedback on how much capacity they have to tackle new challenges.


Effective Branding in LTC


In regards to branding for a LTC organization, Stacey says you should always be relevant, modern, and professional. He discusses the need to step out of dated attitudes toward your branding in order to bring new life to your organization. According to Stacey, effective branding is much more than designing new logos and marketing assets—it’s about aligning your image, procedures, and staff mentality with your organization’s common vision. This is especially important when you operate multiple facilities.

Though it’s difficult to directly measure the ROI from your branding efforts, Stacey says the new awareness and relationships you build are what matter most. When your community understands what you do, and when you form stronger ties with the community, it leads to more success with fundraising and overall support.

Learn more and sign up to be notified about future episodes at LTCHeroes.com


Rapid Fire Q/A


Do you have a mentor that has influenced the way that you lead and deliver care in our industry?
There are many mentors I look to, some I know and some have impacted me indirectly. Some of my indirect mentors would include Teddy Roosevelt and Winston Churchill. These are men who were strong leaders at pivotal times in our nation’s and world history. More recently I look at Stanley McChrystal and David Petraeus for their work in leading the efforts combating global terror.

In the LTC industry, one of my mentors and friends is Bill Biggs. He runs the HMR and many veterans’ homes across the southeast. He has been very helpful along my journey.


What is one lesser-known resource, book, or newsletter that you’ve used to coach and train LTC leaders?
I would first like to mention a podcast called Read to Lead, which exposes you to the key ideas found in many leadership books. A book I would recommend is called Creating Magic by Lee Cockrell, the former Executive VP at Disney. His keys for success in the hospitality industry can be applied effectively within LTC.


What advice would you give your younger self starting in LTC?
Look at what your role models are doing and do your best to model your behavior and attitudes after those you aspire to be.