Interaction’, I wondered how they themselves understood the message and the meaning…
Rather than organise a large event for all the local staff, I decided that a far more effective way of really getting to know exactly what support staff thought about Great Interactions was to attend each team meeting over the next six weeks. So armed with a car boot full of books, I have been doing exactly that- listening, reflecting on what is working and what is not working and generally getting the message across. The biggest challenge for me has always been in explaining the message behind Great Interactions to support staff who confuse meaningful, everyday interactions with the big, ‘champagne moment’ holidays, with wonderful opportunities to try new activities, have exciting days out and so on. Whilst this is exactly what we do and do well, I also often heard the phrase ‘Great Interactions? So? We do this anyway…’ And I got to wondering ‘well, do we? Or have we missed the message somehow?’
So with this in mind, at the team meetings I have been to so far, we have discussed at length the small everyday interactions that really count and make a difference; from supporting someone to make their breakfast or do their
shopping, from supporting someone to clean their house or cook their dinner, each interaction should be ‘quality’- an opportunity to make the person we support feel good and likewise, ourselves, in making that small difference.
Better outcomes for both…I often explain to Support Workers that although they do the same job as Support Workers in other organisations, using Great Interactions as their benchmark will set them apart and make them, and the
people they support, feel just that little bit better. And after all, isn’t that
why we do what we do?
Finally, our local Worcester Roadshow is coming up
in June and I am optimistic that within the displays and presentations the Great
Interactions message will be coming across loud and clear- not in the champagne
moments, but in the everyday stories, from ‘Kathy travels on her own’ to ‘Mark
has a dragon’, each story carries the message that ‘it ain’t what you do, it’s
the way that you do it’…
Area Manager, Registered Care and