Positive about Positive Behaviour Support

Over the last two months I have been delivering PBS training in all of my services, which has involved running the workshop around fifteen times. The great thing about this is that I got to spend some time with almost every single member of staff, some of whom I was meeting for the first time, so it was a real pleasure for me to hear directly from staff and spend some time talking through various situations that they have experienced.

For most people Positive Behaviour Support in its current formulation was an entirely new subject, although everyone was able to relate it to existing practice and could see the development, and many more could relate it directly to work they had been doing with external specialists. But what was really encouraging for me was how quickly and easily people linked PBS to Great Interactions and person centred planning. Staff instinctively grasped the concept and how it links into our values, our Promises and our DNA, and could relate it to their everyday practice.

I must confess to being a little daunted at the prospect of rolling out new training to every single member of staff – in most cases some people get it, others struggle with the ideas and some can even be outright hostile if they disagree with an approach. But the sessions were overwhelmingly positive, with everyone on board, everyone engaged and everyone able to see the value of PBS and how they can apply it in their roles. In every service we had some great discussions and people were able to visualise how they can apply the principles of PBS every day alongside Great Interactions. We talked about how we might in the future be able to incorporate some of those principles effortlessly into person centred planning once teams are more familiar. I was particularly pleased that people responded well to the need for detailed record keeping, since no one likes additional paperwork, but when shown how the functional assessment works, people seemed keen to try one.

So I’d like to thank the staff teams at Anvil Close, Cedar Court, Cypress Gardens, Dartford Rd, Southview Close and Woodacre for their reflection, responsiveness, communication and their warmth. I left each session feeling energised, positive and really grateful that I had the chance to engage with teams in a way that doesn’t happen very often. As some of you know, I will be leaving MacIntyre over the summer but I’m glad that I will be able to take that sense of positivity and energy with me, with a timely reminder of just how great MacIntyre and our staff are.

Barrie Ellis
Area Manager
London, Essex and Kent


  • Kate Webb says:

    Thankyou for sharing this. I love the way you say you felt warmth within the staff teams. I wish you well for the future.

  • Belinda Bradley says:

    Thanks for the blog Barrie. So great to read about your fantastic teams getting excited about building on their brilliant work with Great Interactions and person-centred approaches. MacIntyre really is the perfect place for a PBS approach to thrive as it relies on strong values as a foundation. Great to hear yet another example of those values really shining. Good luck with your next steps and keep in touch. PBS is also about sharing best practice and your next step provides a great opportunity to do just that.

  • Emma Killick says:

    Thanks Barrie – the opportunity to spend time with teams reflecting on what’s important and making connections between the different strands of our work is always a privilege so I’m pleased you had the opportunity to do this and even more so that you’ve taken the time to share that and to thank the teams involved. As Belinda said PBS is about sharing best practice so thank you for all you have done and are doing and every best wish for the future.

  • Patsy deacon says:

    Thanks for this Barrie, as you know I am passionate about great interactions and getting communication right for the individuals that we support. When I did my PBS coaches training I immediately linked the 2 together, a lot of behaviours we encounter are due to us not getting the support right , starting with communication.

  • Working in both learning disabilities and dementia in older people, I find that all to easy staff label behaviour as challenging. Part of this is because of the training in behaviour that most people get and is described as challenging. In most cases behaviour is a form of distress and becomes difficult to communicate the need or want that the person is trying to convey. Being positive on how to communicate and discover the meaning behind the behaviour is the best way to reduce behaviour and concerns.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Telephone 01908 230100 Email hello@macintyrecharity.org