Home Care Day 18: My Home Life for care at home managers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The My Home Life team has had the pleasure of working with Care at Home Managers in Scotland in the last few years. Although the MHL programme was originally designed for care home managers to improve the experience of people living, working, visiting and dying in care homes, in many local authorities the programme has also been offered to Care at Home managers with success.

Within West Dunbartonshire health and social care partnership, care at home teams have been included in the programme. On the current cohort we have a senior manager and three team leads from the Care at Home team as participants.

The model of care within care at home teams means that the managers face to face contact with their large number of colleagues, particularly those who are providing the care, can be limited.

MHL encourages the participants to do things differently, not necessarily do different things and so Care at Home managers have been creative in how they can demonstrate the difference, and co-create solutions with their colleagues.

Using an appreciative approach and the Caring Conversations Framework, communication with colleagues internal and external to the main office has been transformed. Meetings of every kind are conducted differently, ensuring every voice is heard, using creative approaches such as the use of images to help colleagues explain to each other how they feeling. Supervision has been transformed from what used to be a tick box approach to a genuine interest in what is going on for each other and how colleagues can continue to give of their best. Care at home staff tend to be in touch with their managers when things are not going well and telephone calls with colleagues used to be stressful. Now time is given to listening and working with the colleague to come up with a solution which works for everybody, and when things are going well, managers are taking the time to call or text their colleagues to thank them specifically for their work. How manages recruit and support new colleagues into the workforce has also been considered with a view to enhancing the experience for them all and thus improving retention of colleagues.

Managers are also beginning to spend more time with the users of the service, particularly at the assessment stage, where they can find out more about what the expectations and needs of the user are in order to provide the most suitable package of care. Some of them are using emotional touch points to explore how clients are feeling about allowing carers to come into their homes to provide personal care which is giving them further insights. Should a complaint be received, managers will now visit the person who has made the complaint and use one of the creative tools to understand how the person is feeling, how they would like to feel and work with them to come up with a solution together.

 

Below are a couple of quotes from Care at Home participants:-

A client I find difficult and challenging contacted me. I spoke to him about MHL and he invited me out to discuss his care.  I realised no one had asked him how he felt or what could be done… I used the positive inquiry tool and what he said was valid and we had caring conversation. I managed to go get to core of his complaint and we discussed other options. I was able to give feedback to his carers. MHL and the 7 Cs stopped me taking it personally and it…was amazing ,  he gave me feedback about me and my influence.  I agreed to talk with my line manager and have done similar with carers.’

I’ve been taking time to speak to families and relatives who can tell me what is working well with the service. I have become more proactive and not so much reactive. This is the first Christmas I have not been looking for a new job, the shift is in me. I can’t change other people. But I’ve changed.’

 

Care at home teams offer such an amazing service to enable people to stay in their own homes, it is wonderful to see how managers using the MHL approach are transforming personally and professionally, modelling and appreciating different ways of working which are achieving different outcomes for colleagues at all levels.

 

Below are a couple of poems created by Care at Home Team Leads

 

M.H.L. and ME

 

I have the ability
live with me forever
deal with difficult situations
fellowship and support of others

 

Live with me forever
sharing the challenges
fellowship and support of others
different directions

 

Sharing the challenges
deal with difficult situations
different directions
I have the ability

 

My ‘Yes!’ Moment

 

I do think I am of value

I felt an instant shift, my ‘yes!’ moment

Fiona’s words of wisdom struck a chord within me

I own my insecurities now

 

I felt an instant shift, my ‘yes!’ moment

My journey has been slow and steady

I own my insecurities now

I can, and I will, keep on growing

 

My journey has been slow and steady

Fiona’s words of wisdom struck a chord within me

I can, and I will, keep on growing

I do think I am of value

 

Written by Fiona Cook – external My Home Life facilitator

 

 

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