Looking to the Future

Research from Care England, the largest representative body for independent providers of adult social care, has shown that almost half of Brits (47%) have a holiday fund as opposed to only 3% that have a care home fund.  Furthermore almost three quarters of Brits (73%) have no idea how much the average weekly cost of a room in residential care is and 56% of Brits have no idea as to whether they would be entitled to state funding for a stay in a care home. 

Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, says:

This new research from Care England comes at a time when social care is high on the political agenda.  It shows that we as a sector need to do more to inform the public and dispel the myths that have evolved.  We hope that communities will engage with Care Home Open Day on Friday 16 June as a means to celebrate their connections with their local community”. 

Care Home Open Day takes place on Friday 16 June www.carehomeopenday.org.uk and it will focus on the importance of friendship thereby building on Care England’s research that 57% of people think that greater intervention with the local community can combat isolation.  In addition, 6 in 10 people believe that making visiting hours more flexible would be helpful.

Care Home Open Day is yet another opportunity for care homes to be positioned at the hub of the community. 

Care Home Renovations to support clients needs

In the current climate of constant bad news around the care industry its sometimes great to hear about the Good News stories helping to effect and change the lives of those in Care. Dementia has long been a subject at the forefront of peoples concerns - At Belmont Sandbanks Care Group sites in New Romney Kent the group has taken to focus on creating exciting reminiscence spaces.

These innovative spaces are to help clients have greater daily experiences and bring some of the memories from their past into the care home space. Currently we have created the following experiences which are now open:

  • Hair Salon @ Madiera Lodge 
  • Barber Shop @ Sandbanks Care Home
  • London Postbox Scene @ Sandbanks Care Home
  • Beach Hut Scene @ Sandbanks Care 

The next steps to add to the above schemes is the create of our Vintage Tea Rooms and Community Cinema at Madeira Day Centre in New Romney the service will have access available all week to the facilities and enable all people from the community to use the space for a few hours or all day. 

The day centre will hold events and community wide film screening for people in and around the Romney Marsh so watch this space as the Day Centre renovations will be complete in Early may 2017.

We hope you visit soon 

The Belmont Sandbanks Care Team

THE BIG C - COMMUNICATION

So when you begin to look at communication, why so late on? Well its because communication between employers and their employees is almost the final string of the bow as many of the initial tasks become a working reality. If you were to ask any employee about a key challenge within their current work environment most often communication issues will top of the list - or maybe 2nd behind benefits. There is so much available on the subject out in the ether but not all seemed to be adhered to sadly. So why do businesses still face issues when it comes to communication? Especially in the sometimes unvalued Care Sector.

Many believe this is in fact because it is always reviewed from the communicators / business owners point of view rather than that of the listeners / employee’s point of view. Any communicator must understand the needs and perspectives of those in which they wish to communicate with. So the information in which is being shared with any individuals must be of interest, useful or simply relevant to their daily activity. We go to that word “engagement’ again - is the communication engaging employees to listen and process effectively, or sadly are they just switching off.

Some points for communication can include these following 4 steps heavily discussed in Dale Carnegie's training on Leadership and management.

1.     Entertain - Make the verbatim interesting to listen to, be humorous or include interesting facts related to the subject matter. I personally have always found video a great way to engage during communication especially in large groups. With multiple clips on any subject matter available on YouTube it is always a good engagement tool to link in a pithy video into your communications. During sales briefings on getting the most out your day - I would always refer to a clip from the Will Smith film “In the pursuit of Happyness” the film has great moment about selling and how to achieve more in less time. It worked overtime to get people on board to next part of the communication.

2.     Inform - Once people are engaged make sure it is then informative in the next steps. The last thing you need is a meeting for meetings sake; this gets your and your teams nowhere and essentially wastes time.

3.     Convince - Make sure that the people your are engaging with listen and take on board the specifics of your communication. Compelling people to act on the communication, or indeed encourage the additional input with the current meeting. Remember discussion is good.

4.     Communicate to Action - This is the next step, the energy behind the communication. Always having an outcome in mind before communicating is essential to allow some measurement on whether the communication was successful and whether it needs changing for the next attempt. A goal must be communicated for the individuals to achieve.

More often than not what happens is that an action or measurement is never identified by the communication. What will likely happen is a disappointment from the communicator / presenter because the goal they wanted is not achieved. Furthermore frustration from the employees as they are confused by the communication as not demonstrating a benefit to them or their work environment. The next steps must be clear and concise, well planned in advance of the communication. This preparation will bring more valuable outcomes for all concerned.

There are risks still with communication with a desire to always avoid telling or what I call one-way contact. I was brought up with this and from the very first paragraph it has been discuss that you can’t order people around and expect the best results. You always have to be concerned about who is listening and what are their perspectives in the communication. Some may think this is a lot to put into a message but you have to look at the risks of not doing it properly, poor delivery of communication will only lead to one definite outcome - no passion for delivery, poor outcomes and a frustrated workforce. So like or not you have to engage with employees on their level getting them to buy into whatever you are selling.

So communication is business critical for a businesses success, as business leaders everyone can continually improve their focus and purpose of communications. Always presenting an ideal of why the communication is important, clear concise points, which benefit those who are listening in a way which achieves an outcome. 

In your next meeting follow a couple of simple new steps and see how you get on this time with what return you gain:

First, actually plan the discussion, pinpoint your outcomes and engage them with the listeners. Second, find some interesting content whether it be video or event quotations from well known outlets (these are easy to find on the internet) and finally engage in discussions on the goals for the listeners allowing them to buy in to the message at hand. This will work for every meeting, 1-2-1 or presentation you intend on communicating in.