At Ashmere Derbyshire we provide Nursing and Social Care across seven homes in the East Midlands including three specialist Dementia areas. I am Training Manager for our organisation and, as a former carer and manager; I understand the barriers to providing and receiving effective training in the Care Sector.
I design, write and develop bespoke training for all staff across all of the homes and I have found that face-to-face training and support sessions are the most valuable way of getting to know the issues staff are facing in their everyday work and what input is needed to help them work effectively to provide quality services for the residents.
Although a few specialist subject areas require distance learning courses, I feel that having the opportunity to share experiences in group training sessions allows staff to feel valued and, being an in-house trainer, staff know my background and experience and know that I am committed to and invested in improving services for the residents.
I am motivated by a passion for caring for older people. Their care, happiness and well-being are important to me and staff know this through my delivery of tailored training sessions. By visiting each home and spending time with residents and staff on a daily basis I have built up positive relationships and staff are eager to attend training and meet colleagues from other homes. Staff do not feel that training is something to be avoided.
Whilst mandatory training is clearly important, I also design sessions to meet individual needs and, in particular, to enhance personal development for care staff. Courses such as Confidence Building and Communication have been developed following direct requests from staff. Such staff-centred training develops self-awareness and this is reflected in the care the residents receive.
Developing a specialist course for Dementia workers across the company has been well received and being accredited by the CPD service, staff feel that they are valued and that the time and energy invested in their training does count to their overall professional development and is developed specifically for them in their specialist roles.
Whilst I deliver most subjects across the company, external, specialist trainers are brought in to provide training in areas such as Phlebotomy, Safe Handling of Medication and Verification of Death. I source this training with the care staff in mind and have developed close relationships with a core group of external providers. This ensures that these providers understand the needs of the company and provide a complimentary service to the ongoing in-house training.
Staff who are new to Ashmere receive a full week’s induction which I deliver: again, it is the personal touch that staff notice and feedback is always positive, appreciating how much better the training is than working through online courses or DVDs.
“I am always so pleased with the feedback from inductions. It shows that people really do learn from each other, and this face-to-face training allows for a range of learning needs to be catered for. Sharing experience and expertise with like-minded people boosts self-esteem and really prepares new staff for work. They are all so eager to get started once induction comes to an end”
- Listen to staff to find out what training they want to develop themselves
- Write training plans geared to staff working environments
- Be present: get to know staff so that they feel comfortable attending training
- Use feedback to improve services
- Ensure any external providers understand your expectations and value your business
- Be approachable, supportive and responsive
- Make training personal – not general!